Iraqi security forces open fire on protestors, kill two and injure 75
Iraqi security forces on Sunday opened fire to disperse anti-government protesters near a major trade port, killing two of them and injuring 75 others, witnesses said.
The forces used live bullets to break up the protesters who were trying to block roads leading to Umm Qasr Port in the oil-rich southern province of Basra, the witnesses added.
One witness described a heavy deployment of security forces and two military vehicles burning.
So far, there has been no official comment.
Umm Qasr Port, around 550 kilometres south of the capital Baghdad, has been closed more than once by demonstrators since the anti-government rallies erupted in Iraq in early October.
Demonstrators are calling for the resignation of the government, the dissolution of parliament and an overhaul of the country’s political system, which has been in place since the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq.
Around 330 people, mostly protesters, have died in the demonstrations which have mainly affected Baghdad and the oil-rich south, according to the Iraqi High Commission for Human Rights.
Several rights groups have accused the Iraqi security forces of using excessive violence to quell the protests.
The demonstrations are Iraq’s largest since December 2017 when Baghdad declared the liberation of all territory that was previously under the control of Islamic State extremists.
©2019 Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH (Hamburg, Germany)
Visit Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH (Hamburg, Germany) at www.dpa.de/English.82.0.html
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.