Over the weekend, at least 74 protesters were killed and over 3,600 wounded as protestors demanded an end to government corruption; rising unemployment; and dire living conditions, such as limited access to electricity and clean water.
Thanks to the United States’ invasion and destruction of Iraq in 2003, in a war based on lies by George W. Bush and supported by the political parties and the media, over one million people have been killed, and the country has been bombed into ruins.
As a consequence, The World Bank reports Iraq’s youth unemployment is around 25 percent. The most recent Corruption Perception Index, published by Transparency International, ranks Iraq as the tenth most corrupt country in the world.
Prime Minister Adil Abdul Mahdi called out the Iraqi Counter Terrorism Services and stated they should “use all necessary measures” to get the protesters off the streets.
The politically powerful religious cleric Muqtada al-Sadr publicly threatened to force Mahdi out of office if he failed to back off the harsh retaliation against the protesters, and he didn’t enact political reforms previously promised.
Yesterday, Mahdi declared a curfew in Baghdad after the fourth consecutive day of anti-government protests, which saw two more people killed and over 100 injured.
Government security forces fired tear gas at university students who were breaking the curfew, and soldiers beat up high school students with batons in two Baghdad districts.
Al-Sadr then issued a written statement calling for a new election overseen by United Nations observers.
Yesterday evening, as protests extended into the fifth consecutive day, confrontations between authorities and protesters became even more violent. A dozen people were killed, and hundreds were injured when security officials opened fire on those demonstrating.