Skip to main content

Lebanese Shiites fear Salafist terrorism during Ashoura

This year, the Salafist practice of targeting Shiite Ashoura processions in Iraq may spread to Lebanon.
Shi'ite Muslim men bleed as they gash their foreheads with swords and beat themselves during a ceremony marking Ashura in Nabatieh, southern Lebanon November 25, 2012. Shi'ite mourners beat themselves during Ashura with steel-tipped flails or slash their bodies with knives to mark the death anniversary of Imam Hussein, a grandson of the Prophet Mohammad, who was killed during a battle in A.D. 680 in Kerbala, a city in modern-day Iraq. REUTERS/Sharif Karim  (LEBANON - Tags: RELIGION) SOCIETY) - RTR3AURP
Read in 

Each year, during the first 10 days of the month of Muharram — according to the Islamic calendar — Shiite Muslims commemorate the death of Imam Hussein bin Ali, who was the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, the son of Imam Ali (the husband of the prophet’s daughter) and one of the 12 imams who are held in the highest esteem among Shiites.

Hussein was killed in the year 680, when the army of Yazid bin Muawiya cut off the road that Hussein was on as he was going to Iraq. According to the narrative, Hussein sought to save his grandfather’s religion from the misguided Umayyad rule.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.