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Mourning Declared For Iraqi Stampede Victims

The aftermath of the stampede on 31 August 1 September 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Funerals are being held today in Iraq for nearly 1,000 Shi'ite Muslim pilgrims who were killed in a stampede on a Baghdad bridge.

The government has declared three days of mourning.

The latest toll from security officials is 965 killed and more than 460 injured in the 31 August stampede.

The crowd was converging on the Kadhimiya mosque in northern Baghdad for a religious ceremony when panic erupted over rumors of a suicide bomber.

The tragedy has been deplored by leaders around the world.

Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad expressed deep regret for what he called a "terrorist" attack.

Syria, Pakistan, the Arab League, and Russia also expressed regret and condolences.

The European Union and NATO said terrorists were responsible for inciting the deaths.

In Washington, the U.S. State Department extended condolences to the families of the victims and pledged aid efforts.


See also:

"Three Days Of Mourning For 1,000 Stampede Victims"