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16 April 2024

Iraq suicide attack kills 50 pilgrims


A suicide attack on pilgrims on the outskirts of the main southern Iraqi city of Basra killed 50 people on Saturday at the end of Arbaeen commemorations, the provincial health chief told AFP.

Riyadh Abdulamir, head of the health department in Basra province, said 50 people were killed and 100 wounded in the 9:00 am (0600 GMT) attack just west of Basra city.

Women and children were among the casualties, he said.

The attacker, who had been distributing food to pilgrims walking to the Khutwa Imam Ali, blew himself up near a police checkpoint.

Pilgrims in south Iraq who cannot visit the central shrine city of Karbala to mark Arbaeen typically make the shorter trip to Khutwa Imam Ali, which lies around 12 km west of Basra.