At least nine people were killed and 43 others injured in a series of attacks, which targeted Shiite pilgrims who began arriving on Tuesday in Kadhimiya, located in the northern part of Baghdad, to mark the so-called "anniversary of the death of Musa Kazim" - the seventh of the 12 revered imams in the Shia.
The attacks, which amounted to eight, started with the fall of mortar bombs at the Shula district, which led to the deaths of two visitors, and wounded four others.
Four other pilgrims were killed by a bomb explosion in New Baghdad blast while 14 others were wounded. Two mortar rounds landed in Kadhimiya, kilIing three people and injuring eight others.
Tens of thousands of worshipers, some from abroad, were expected in Baghdad for celebrations that will peak Wednesday and Thursday.
Meanwhile, the commander of U.S. forces in Iraq, General Ray Odierno stated there might be a need to "UN peacekeepers in Iraq after the withdrawal of U.S. forces." Odierno said in an interview with The Associated Press that If tensions between Arabs and Kurds in northern Iraq are not resolved before U.S. troop withdrawal, there will be a need for these troops to protect the disputed areas.