Millions of Shia Muslims around the world gathered to commemorate the seventh-century killing of the Prophet Mohammed's grandson, thousands of which used the Ashura event as an opportunity to stand against terrorism at a time of increasing Islamophobia.
Pilgrims flocked to Karbala, where Hussain ibn Ali was killed by the forces of the Caliph Yazid in A.D. 680 - a formative event in Shia Islam.
Some 25,000 members of Iraq’s security forces were deployed to protect the pilgrims, who in the past have faced attacks from ISIS and other extremist groups.
Ashura is the tenth day of the Muslim month of Muharram and is preceded by nine days of mourning, Islamic lectures, and narrating the story of Hussain and his 72 family members and companions - all of which were killed or imprisoned in Karbala, modern-day Iraq.
Similar events took place around the globe, including neighboring Iran and Lebanon as well as the British capital, where thousands of Londoners gathered to mark the event with anti-ISIS slogans.
"ISIS will lose, love will win” and “We stand united against terrorism” were just come of the placards to decorate London’s streets, where the militant group has claimed responsibility for a number of attacks in the past few months alone.
Thousands of protesters march through London today to mark Ashura and celebrate the defeat of IS Jack Taylor/Getty Images pic.twitter.com/WtIIplw2Za— Ben Nicholls (@Benjaminicholls) October 1, 2017
Just a week earlier, British police said they charged an 18-year-old Iraqi man with attempted murder following the bombing of a London Underground train, which injured 30 people.
The explosion at Parsons Green station in south-west London was Britain's fifth terror attack in six months and was claimed by ISIS, although both British and U.S. officials have cast doubt on the statement, saying there was no evidence any recognized militant group had ordered or organized the bombing.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
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