Over 14 million pilgrims have arrived in Karbala by Saturday, according to Nasif al-Khatabi.
Additionally, he estimated that from the 21 million pilgrims who were counted during Arbaeen last year to more than 30 million this year, there will be a 50% increase in the number of pilgrims. The Arbaeen procession this year is anticipated to be the largest in recent memory.
Arbaeen marks the fortieth day after the death anniversary of Prophet Mohammed’s family. His grandson Hussain, along with his family and companions, including his baby son, were slaughtered in 680AD in what is now the city of Karbala, Iraq.
It brings together millions of people from across the world who undertake an 80-kilometer walk between the holy Iraqi cities of Najaf and Karbala.
The pilgrims pay tribute and renew their allegiance to Imam Hussein (AS), the all-time icon of fighting injustice, oppression and despotism, during the annual event, which is one of the largest religious congregations in the world.
Khatabi said Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani directly supervises the successful holding of the Arba’een commemoration.
According to Ahmad Vahidi, Iran’s interior minister, more than 2.3 million Iranians have returned home after travelling approximately 3.8 million miles to neighbouring Iraq.
Additionally, free medical treatments are provided by volunteer doctors to people who may have suffered from heat stroke or other problems related to such lengthy journeys.
Nearly 13,000 stalls have been set up to provide free services to the pilgrims this year, according to articles published in Iraqi media last week.
The largest assembly on earth tonight saw its highest turnout ever, making history both in Iraq and around the world.
Two times as many as in 2016 and far more than the 2 to 3 million who journeyed to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, for the annual Hajj pilgrimage, it is anticipated that some 22 million people travelled to Karbala, Iraq, to mark the Arbaeen occasion.
The Arbaeen march is a tremendously potent manifestation of togetherness, amity, and solidarity.
Participating in the trek is not compulsory for the pilgrims, but they take part in the spiritual journey to express their respect and love for the sacrifices Imam Hussein (AS) and his loyal companions made in the battle of Karbala to fight the tyrant and illegitimate ruler of the time Yazid.
The walk is keeping alive the movement of Karbala, a movement against terrorism, fascism and imperialism.