31 killed in stampede at Iraqi shrine

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Baghdad, Sep 10 (IANS) At least 31 people were killed and 100 others injured on Tuesday in a stampede at a major shrine in the Iraqi city of Karbala as they were marking the Shia ritual of Ashura, officials said.

The incident took place when thousands of pilgrims pushed into the entrance of Imam Hussein shrine in Karbala, some 110 km south of Baghdad, said Iraqi Health Ministry spokesman Sayf al-Badr, according to reports.

“The death toll rose to 31 people and some 100 others were wounded in the stampede in Karbala and 10 of the wounded are in critical condition,” said Al-Badr in a statement.

The religious occasion falls on the 10th of the first lunar month of Muharram and is observed to commemorate the death of Imam Hussain, one of the grandsons of the Prophet Mohammad, in the 7th-century Battle of Karbala.

–IANS

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