Huge numbers of Shia Muslim pilgrims gathered in the Iraqi city of Karbala at the climax of a key festival, despite threats of violence.
Iraq says up to 22 million made the pilgrimage over 40 days this year, more than a million from Iran, and many remained for the ceremony of Arbaeen.
Arbaeen marks the end of the 40-day mourning period for the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad.
Hussein, the third Shia Imam, was killed in battle at Karbala in the 7th Century.
His martyrdom is considered a defining event in the schism between Sunnis and Shia Muslims.
Arbaeen: Then and now
- Biggest annual gathering of Shia Muslims worldwide
- Arbaeen period lasts 40 days, with ceremonies marking the climax in Karbala
- The pilgrimage was suppressed by Saddam Hussein, Iraq’s former leader, who persecuted the Shia Muslims
- After his overthrow in 2003, Arbaeen was revived and now attracts many millions every year, including pilgrims from Iran and India
- Massive rise in visitor numbers in 2014, partly attributed to easing of visa requirements for Iranians
- New access roads had to be opened to admit the surge in pilgrims this year, an Iraqi official told AFP news agency
- Catering and clean-up operation supported by security forces and tens of thousands of volunteers.