Following protests in Baghdad, Iraqi security injured over a dozen people and killed one.


Following protests in Baghdad, Iraqi security injured over a dozen people and killed one.

Hundreds of Iraqis took to the streets of Baghdad on Tuesday to protest an increase in targeted killings of prominent activists and journalists, resulting in over a dozen injuries and one death, according to the Associated Press.

In the early evening, clashes between demonstrators and security forces erupted near Tahrir Square. According to Iraqi security officials, security forces used tear gas and live rounds to disperse the crowd, while protesters threw stones and bricks at police.

One protester was shot and died in the hospital, according to a security source.

See the list below for further Associated Press reporting.

According to rules, the security officials spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Earlier in the day, protesters from southern provinces such as Dhi Qar and Karbala gathered in the square amid heavy security. Tensions have risen in recent weeks as a result of the rising number of targeted killings.

At Tahrir Square, activist Kamal Jaban said, “Today’s protests took place because the weak government failed to uphold its promises to bring the murderers to justice.”

Many people waved Iraqi flags and held up portraits of Ehab Wazni, a prominent activist who was assassinated in Karbala earlier this month, one of three targeted killings in Iraq this month. Protesters had given the government two weeks to find and prosecute his assailants.

“Because the government failed to produce, we were forced to march,” Jaban explained.

Since an anti-government protest movement swept Iraq in October 2019, the High Commission for Human Rights confirmed that nearly 35 activists have been killed. Since then, there have been almost 82 attempted murders.

According to spokesman Ali al-Bayati, 15 Iraqis were killed and 30 attempted killings were reported by the commission in the last year alone.

Protesters were outraged that, after conducting several inquiries into the killings, Iraqi authorities had yet to identify any suspects. They suspect the assailants are connected to Iran-backed paramilitary groups, and that the government is unable to locate them.

“Impunity results from the inability of state agencies to hold offenders accountable,” al-Bayati explained. “This gives them permission to proceed.”

Many expect the killings to continue as Iraq prepares to hold early elections in October, as anti-government demonstrators have demanded.

Many of the same demonstrators are now calling for the polls to be called off. This is a condensed version of the information.


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