Mazar-i-Sharif Blue Mosque in Afghanistan
‘The Sacred Grave’ is one of the alleged burial places of the last righteous Caliph Ali, the son-in-law and cousin of the Prophet Muhammad.
According to some historical data, shortly after Ali's assassination and the burial of his body in Najaf near Baghdad, some of his followers were worried that his body would be desecrated by his enemies, so they decided to hide the body. Putting it on a camel, they walked for several weeks until the camel fell. After that, it was decided to bury the body at the site of the camel's fall. The burial place later became known as the grave of the saint - Mazar-i-Sharif. Subsequently, around the burial place, a city arose with a similar name - Mazar-i-Sharif.
According to legends, the grave was discovered by accident, and the last sultan of the Seljuk Empire, Ahmad Sanjar, built the first shrine over the grave. In 1220, during the Mongol invasion led by Genghis Khan, the grave was covered with earth and disguised to avoid desecration from the Mongols.
In 1998, the Blue Mosque was closed to the Taliban, who had their own ideas about the purity of Islam and opposed ‘idolatry’. However, after the capture of Mazar-i-Sharif by the Northern Alliance troops, the mosque was reopened to pilgrims.