Iraq protests continue as more than 20 protesters are killed today
Iraq protests continued today after a two week pause, with reports of more than 20 protesters having been killed. The protests, which began earlier this month, resulted in “at least 157 deaths and 5,494 injured people” according to a report by the Human Rights Office of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI). The report outlines basic human rights violations “including deliberate killings of unarmed protesters and excessive use of force by units deployed to manage the demonstrations.” UNAMI also cites the Iraq government’s “deletion of footage, attacks against media outlets as well as… shutting down internet and blocking social media.” Today, the United Nations reports “the continued blocking of social media and intermittent blocking of the internet.”
Leaders of Iraq, including Prime Minister Adil Abdul Mahdi and President Barham Salih, met yesterday and discussed “the importance of setting a deadline for meeting protesters” legitimate demands regarding the reforms and combating of corruption.” The Iraq leaders “also emphasized on ensuring the constitutional right of the citizens to demonstrate peacefully and express their opinions freely”.