Toll rises to 9 after police firing kills another protester in Baghdad; Iraq says 260 security personnel wounded in clashes so far

Unemployment protests in Iraq close in on the capital Baghdad. The police firing has so far claimed 9 lives in the southern part of the country

Agence France-Presse July 21, 2018 08:18:21 IST
Toll rises to 9 after police firing kills another protester in Baghdad; Iraq says 260 security personnel wounded in clashes so far

Diwaniyah (Iraq): A man was killed on Friday in a new day of protests in Iraq, a medical source said, as authorities struggle to contain social unrest which has reached the capital Baghdad.

The latest death brings the number of people killed in protests to nine as Iraqis hit out at a litany of social and economic woes. The man killed was aged around 20 and died after being shot in the southern city of Diwaniyah, a medical source said, as hundreds of people gathered outside the local headquarters of an armed group.

Toll rises to 9 after police firing kills another protester in Baghdad Iraq says 260 security personnel wounded in clashes so far

People shout slogans during a protest near the main provincial government building in Basra. Reuters

Shots were fired by a guard from the powerful Iranian-backed Badr organisation, the source added, asking not to be name.

The unrest erupted in Basra province on 8 July when security forces opened fire, killing one person as protesters demanded jobs and basic services.

Others killed during July's protests were shot by unknown assailants.

The Iraqi government has swiftly denounced "vandals" it accuses of infiltrating the protests. Earlier this week, authorities said more than 260 security personnel had been wounded in ongoing clashes.

As southern Iraqis continued to rally against corruption, unemployment, high prices, power cuts and a lack of clean water, demonstrators also rallied in the capital Baghdad on Friday. "We believed that these politicians would improve the situation in the country, but they aren't doing anything," said Yahya Hasnawi, 50, one of thousands of protesters in Baghdad.

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