National

Two bishops resign in Dublin

DUBLIN — Two Roman Catholic bishops in Ireland resigned on Christmas Day in the wake of a damning investigation into decades of church cover-up of child abuse in the Dublin archdiocese.

Dublin Bishops Eamonn Walsh and Ray Field offered an apology to child-abuse victims as they announced their resignations during Christmas Mass. Priests read the statement to worshippers throughout the archdiocese, home to a quarter of Ireland's 4 million Catholics.

Earlier this month two other bishops, Donal Murray of Limerick and Jim Moriarty of Kildare, quit following the Nov. 26 publication of a three-year investigation into why so many abusive Dublin priests escaped justice for so long.

Bomb kills 6 during holiday procession

BAGHDAD — A roadside bomb killed six Shiite Muslim pilgrims Friday during a procession, the latest violence targeting the group during observances of a religious holiday, officials said.

The deaths followed heightened tensions in a northern Iraqi town after troops were deployed following a scuffle between Christians and Shiites over holiday decorations.

Observances of the 10-day Shiite festival of Ashoura, which ends on Dec. 27, coincided Friday with Christian celebrations of Christmas.

The government has been trying to assure people it can protect both Shiites and Christians during the two holidays. During Ashoura, hundreds of thousands of pilgrims converge on the holy city of Karbala.

In the days leading up to the event, large processions of men go through the streets of Shiite neighborhoods, beating their chests and using chains to flay their backs in a show of grief over the 7th-century killing of the Prophet Muhammad's grandson, Imam Hussein.

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