Security boost in Iraq shrine cities for Ashura

-File photo

Tens of thousands of Iraqi troops and police have been deployed in the shrine cities of Karbala and Najaf for the 10-day Ashura ceremony marking Shia holiest days, police said on Saturday.
Up to a million pilgrims are expected to descend on Karbala in time for the annual proceedings on January 20.
“Special security measures have been set up in the streets of Najaf and on the roads to Karbala,” Najaf police chief Major General Abdullah Karim Mustafa told AFP.
Some 20,000 troops and police will be in Najaf itself and 4,000 policemen are patrolling the 50-kilometre (30-mile) route to Karbala, he said.

Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2008