Shiite faithful pilgrims march to Karbala for Arbaeen in Mahmoudiya, about 20 miles (30 kilometers) south of Baghdad, Iraq, Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017. (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
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More than two million Iranian pilgrims have crossed the border into Iraq for the annual Arbaeen Shiite pilgrimage to be celebrated on Thursday, an Iranian official said on state television.Participation in Arbaeen from mainly Shiite Iran has spiked massively in recent years, with some two to three million Iranians among the 17 to 20 million pilgrims who attended last year.According to media reports, up to 300,000 would-be but visa-less pilgrims have been turned back by Iranian authorities at the border.Last month, Iranian newspapers reported that police had seized 100,000 fake visas for Iraq and made six arrests ahead of Arbaeen.
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