Roads blocked in Iraq as anti-government protests continue

Roads blocked in Iraq as anti-government protests continue
Anti-government protesters set fire and close streets in Iraq. (AP)
Baghdad, Nov 5 (IANS) | Publish Date: 11/5/2019 11:29:52 AM IST

Several roads were blocked across Iraq on Tuesday as the anti-government protests continued. An Interior Ministry told Efe news that demonstrators burned tires and closed roads in the capital Baghdad, adding security forces responded with tear gas.

Key bridges of Jumhuriya, Sinak and Ahrar in Baghdad remained cut off with concrete blocks.

A security source in the city of Basrah said that security forces fired tear gas and water cannons to disperse hundreds of protesters that burned tires and blocked off the road leading to the country’s main seaport of Umm Qasr. The Internet was shut down early Tuesday morning but it resumed later intermittently.

On Monday, the Iraqi High Commission for Human Rights (IHCHR) said that at least two people were killed and 23 others injured in the southern province of Dhi Qar. The IHCHR added that another seven died and 12 wounded amid clashes in central Baghdad, a day after three protesters were killed in confrontations in the Shiite-majority city of Karbala that took place when demonstrators attacked the Iranian consulate.

Protesters have been chanting slogans against Iran and its role in the country amid ongoing anti-government protests in Baghdad and other cities in central and southern Iraq. The second wave of protests broke out on October 25 to decry unreliable electric and water services, lack of economic opportunities and pervasive corruption, leaving at least 100 people killed and another 5,500 injured in clashes between protesters and security forces.

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