Over two million Iranian pilgrims in Iraq for Arbaeen

October 12, 2019

TEHRAN – Secretary of Security and Law Enforcement Committee of the Arbaeen Central Headquarters says more than two million Iranian pilgrims have already crossed the border into Iraq to attend the Arbaeen march.

“The number of pilgrims who have crossed land and air borders has crossed the two-million mark, and the figure is expected to cross 2.2 million by midnight,” Hossein Sajedinia said on Thursday, Mehr reported.

Sajedinia said border crossings are overcrowded but people are crossing through the gates smoothly.

He also asked Iranian pilgrims to use all three available border crossings to prevent overcrowding at the Khosravi border checkpoint, which is a popular exit point for Iranians leaving the country.

The Arbaeen march, which is the largest religious gathering in the world, comes 40 days after Ashura, the martyrdom anniversary of Imam Hussein (PBUH), the second Imam of Shia Muslims and the grandson of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

This year, Arbaeen falls on Saturday, October 19.

Each year, a huge crowd of people flock to Karbala, where the holy shrine of Imam Hussein (AS) is located, to perform mourning rituals.

More than 3 million people have so far registered to participate in the Arbaeen march, IRNA reported on Thursday.

This year, visa requirement was removed for the pilgrims as a “positive step” toward paving the way for Iranian pilgrims visiting the neighboring country.

Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on September 18 that “the Arbaeen march is an extraordinary phenomenon not only in our era but also throughout history.”

He added, “We cannot find such a gathering and movement that takes place every year more enthusiastically than the previous years.”

Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, chief of Iran’s Assembly of Experts, said on September 30 that the Arbaeen march is symbol of unity between the Iranian and Iraqi people and also shows power of Islam.

“The people’s participation in the Arbaeen march prevents divisive policies by the enemies,” Jannati added.

MH/PA

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