1. Karbala, Iraq
Shiite pilgrims run between the Imam Hussein and Imam Abbas shrines as part of a ritual of the Ashura ceremony in Karbala, the historical site of Hussein’s death.
2. Sanaa, Yemen
Shiite men take part in a procession in honor of Ashura, commemorated on the tenth day of the Islamic calendar’s month of Muharram.
3. Beirut, Lebanon
Lebanese Hezbollah supporters gesture as they march during a religious procession to mark Ashura in Beirut’s suburbs, a stronghold of the Shiite militant group.
4. Istanbul, Turkey
Turkish Shiite men beat their chests as they mourn during an Ashura procession.
5. Amroha, India
6. Sadr City, Iraq
Local actors dressed as ancient warriors re-enact a scene from the battle of Karbala. Shiite Muslims consider Hussein to be the Prophet Muhammad’s true heir; Hussein’s death was a major cause for the historical schism between Sunni and Shiite Muslims.
7. Kabul, Afghanistan
Afghan men flagellate themselves to ritually punish their bodies.
8. Karbala, Iraq
Shiite pilgrims beat themselves with iron chains.
9. Amroha, India
10. Beirut, Lebanon
Lebanese Red Cross personnel stand watch as Lebanese supporters of the Shiite Amal movement men beat their foreheads, another Ashura tradition.
11. Mumbai, India
Shiite Muslims use knives and whips, in another display of self-flagellation.
12. Baguba, Iraq
13. Kabul, Afghanistan
14. Nabatieh, Lebanon
A Shiite Muslim woman bleeds as she taps her forehead with a sword in Nabatieh town, southern Lebanon.
15. Najaf, Iraq
16. Amroha, India
17. Yangon, Burma
A Shiite Muslim walks across hot coals at a mosque in central Yangon.
18. Karbala, Iraq
A man with mud on his face cries in commemoration of the religious festival.
19. Istanbul, Turkey
Turkish Shiite women publicly mourn as an Ashura procession passes.
20. Beirut, Lebanon
A girl wearing a headscarf that reads ‘Hussein’ watches a Muharram procession in Beirut.
21. Sadr City, Iraq
Residents watch a re-enactment of the 7th century battle of Karbala.
22. Kabul, Afghanistan
23. Istanbul, Turkey
Turkish Shiite girls watch a re-enactment of the battle of Karbala being broadcasted on a huge screen in Istanbul.
24. Manama, Bahrain
Women look at art pieces during an art exhibition set up by locals artists as part of events related to the holiday.
25. Yangon, Burma
Shiiite Muslims wait outside of a mosque during a ceremony in central Yangon.
26. Turkey, Istanbul
27. Baghdad, Iraq
Supporters of Iraq’s Shiite party, the Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council, listen to their leader, Ammar al-Hakim, during a rally in Baghdad.
28. Beirut, Lebanon
Lebanon’s Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah addresses his supporters during a religious procession in Beirut’s suburbs.
29. Karbala, Iraq
Security personnel stand guard in Karbala, where around a million pilgrims are expected to converge. Ashura has become a show of strength for Shiites in Iraq, as under Saddam Hussein they faced religious oppression.
31. Cairo, Egypt
In Egypt, authorities closed the Shia Al-Husseini Mosque in Cairo so no commemorations were allowed inside.