At least 41 people are reported to have died after a female suicide bomber blew herself up in Iraq.
The attack took place in the northeast of Baghdad as thousands of Shi’ite Muslims flooded on to the streets to begin a pilgrimage to the city of Kerbala, some 80 kilometres south of the Iraqi capital.
Sources say more than 100 people were injured in the blast.
In recent years Sunni extremists have been blamed for a series of deadly strikes during the religious rite, known as Arbain.
The attack comes amid rising sectarian tensions ahead of parliamentary elections scheduled for next mouth.