Oct 29, 2019

18 dead after gunmen attack Iraqi protestors

Photo: AFP/Getty Images

At least 18 Iraqis died and hundreds more were wounded after masked gunmen opened fire on protesters in Karbala early Tuesday morning, reports the Associated Press.

Why it matters: Over 250 Iraqis have died since the start of the anti-government protests this month, per Al Jazeera. This latest attack comes a day after the government announced a curfew, and is the fifth consecutive day of protests across Iraq.

The state of play: Al Jazeera is reporting that Iraqi security forces carried out the attack in an attempt to disperse anti-government protesters, but AP only reports that masked gunman carried out the attack — and it's not yet clear who orchestrated it.

  • Worth noting: A dozen senior military and police commanders have already been removed from their posts and are being investigated for giving orders earlier this month to attack protesters, reports the New York Times.

The bottom line: The widespread protests over corruption and unemployment continue to rock Iraq, which has experienced relative stability for the past two years.

Go deeper: The unstable future of Iraq's leadership

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Iraq unrest: Protesters attack Iranian consulate in Karbala

An Iraqi protester holds a placard reading "We are an invincible nation" during ongoing anti-government demonstrations, Karbala, Nov. 1. Photo: Mohammed Sawaf/AFP via Getty Images

Protesters in Iraq climbed the concrete barriers outside the Iranian Consulate and tore down Iran's flag in the Shiite holy city of Karbala in central Iraq Sunday night amid ongoing demonstrations, AP reports.

Details: Security forces dispersed the protesters, who numbered in the dozens, by firing into the air, per Al Jazeera, which reports demonstrators "threw stones and burned tires around the building." President Trump retweeted without comment videos from the attack, including one from Saudi news outlet Arab News:

Go deeperArrowNov 4, 2019

U.S. joins UN urging Iraq to call early elections

A demonstrator, wounded after security forces' intervention with a gas bomb, during the ongoing anti-government demonstrations Baghdad on Sunday. Photo: Murtadha Sudani/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

The Trump administration joined the UN Sunday in urging Iraq’s government to hold early elections and "halt the violence against protesters" after scores were killed by security forces in weeks of unrest.

Why it matters: Demonstrations over the past two months have rocked Iraq, which had been in a state of relative stability for two years. At least 320 protesters have died in the unrest, with four more protesters killed and "some 130 wounded in clashes" in the southern city of Nasiryah over the weekend, AP reports.

Go deeperArrowNov 11, 2019

Iraqi prime minister to resign after weeks of deadly protests

Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Photo: Thomas Koehler /Contributor/Getty Images

Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi has agreed to resign amid anti-government protests that have resulted more than 200 dead, reports Bloomberg.

Why it matters: Demonstrations over the past month have rocked the country, which had been in a state of relative stability for the past two years. Protestors have demanded Abdul-Mahdi to step down and called for a broad overhaul of the government, condemning unemployment, violence and corruption throughout the country.

Go deeperArrowOct 31, 2019