Many killed in Iraq after security forces kill protestors
Jibril Khoury and Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
Protestors in Iraq have been killed in several parts of mainly Shia areas of this nation. It is believed that at least 20 people have perished but the numbers are likely to be higher. Therefore, while demonstrations are nothing new in Iraq, nor chaos since the destabilization of this nation; the latest demonstrations are a little different because they appear outside the reaches of important political vested interests.
Demands being uttered are based on bread and butter issues and tinged with nationalist sentiments. In other words, the never-ending meddling and intrigues of America and Iran that dictate to different political forces in Iraq are despised. Similarly, in northern parts of Iraq, the nation of Turkey is focused on its own personal geopolitical interests. Hence, with poverty being widespread and an inadequate infrastructural system in place, then many of the younger generations have had enough.
People who don’t want to be ruled by America or Iran hate Iranian tutelage and approach of using proxies in Iraq. This is helping to trigger nationalist sentiments because the once-powerful Iraq is now but a pale shadow of its past. Thus, with the health care system being in tatters, ineffectual wages for poorer people, unemployment, an insufficient educational system that is starved of major economic input, sectarianism and outside meddling, kidnappings, and other similar ills, then protestors believe that they can’t take much more.
One protestor informed Reuters, “They have arrested our people. They have done things to our people they did not even do to Daesh [the jihadist group Islamic State]. They have beaten them up and humiliated them while firing live gunfire.”
He continued, pointedly, “What did we do? Are we suicide bombers?”
The BBC reports, “Violence is concentrated in Baghdad and in the majority Shia Muslim areas of the south. Northern Kurdish regions and Sunni-majority areas in the west remain mostly calm.”
Voice of America reports, “The violence was some of the worst between protesters and security forces in Iraq, signaling that the war-weary country could be facing a new round of political instability. Iraq has been caught in the middle of U.S.-Iran tensions in the Middle East, putting an additional strain on the fragile government in Baghdad that hosts thousands of U.S. troops and powerful paramilitary forces allied with Iran.”
Live ammunition was used by the police in the district of Zaafaraniya in Baghdad and in other parts of Iraq. Thus people were killed in the vicinity of Nassiriya and in the city of Amara. Other parts of the south witnessed demonstrations despite the actions of the security apparatus.
Reuters reports, “Protesters directed their anger at a government and political class they say is corrupt and doing nothing to improve their lives.”
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