Incident Summary:

03/02/2004: In related incidents, al-Qaida suicide bombers targeted Shi'ite pilgrims during the holy month of Ashura. A suicide bomber and other perpetrators using non-suicide explosive devices targeted the holy shrine of Hussain in Karbala, Iraq. At least 106 people were killed and 233 injured in the attacks. US military authorities believed Abu Musab al-Zarqawi planned the attack.

GTD ID:
200403020001

When:
2004-03-02

Country:
Iraq

Region:
Middle East & North Africa

Province/administrative
region/u.s. state:

Karbala

City:
Karbala

Attack Information
Type of Attack (more) Bombing/Explosion
Successful Attack? (more) Yes
Target Information (more)
Target Type: Private Citizens & Property
Name of Entity Shi'ite Civilians
Specific Description Indiscriminate pilgrims at the Shrine of Hussain in Karbala, Iraq.
Nationality of Target Iran
Target Type: Religious Figures/Institutions
Name of Entity Shi'ite Civilians
Specific Description Indiscriminate pilgrims at the Shrine of Hussain in Karbala, Iraq.
Nationality of Target Iraq
Additional Information
Hostages No
Property Damage Unknown
Extent of Property Damage Unknown
Value of Property Damage Unknown
Weapon Information
Type Sub-type
Explosives/Bombs/Dynamite Suicide (carried bodily by human being)
Explosives/Bombs/Dynamite Projectile (rockets, mortars, RPGs, etc.)
Weapon Details
Suicide bombers and mortars were used to maximize casualties in this incident.
Additional Information
Suicide Attack?Yes
Part of Multiple Incident?Yes
Criterion 1 (more) Yes
Criterion 2 (more) Yes
Criterion 3 (more) Yes
Doubt Terrorism Proper (more) No
Perpetrator Group Information
Group Name Claimed Responsibility
Tawhid and Jihad (suspected) No
Perpetrator Statistics
Number of Perpetrators Unknown
Number of Captured Perpetrators 0
Casualty Information
Total Number of Casualties 110 Fatalities / 233 Injured
Total Number of Fatalities 110
Number of U.S. Fatalities 0
Number of Perpetrator Fatalities 1
Total Number of Injured 233
Number of U.S. Injured 0
Number of Perpetrators Injured 0
Sources
Tarek Al-Issa, “Pilgrims new focus of death squads,” The Advertiser, March 3, 2004.
Justin Huggler, “Iraq Bombings: The Day of Desecration: How Bombs Tore Apart a Festival of Hope,” The Independent, March 3, 2004.
Michael Howard, “Al Qaeda blamed for attacks on Shias as 170 die in Iraq Crowds turn on US troops after explosions at shrines,” The Irish Times, March 3, 2004.