Iraq protests: More deaths as unrest continues

Security forces have allegedly fired on protesters in southern Iraq, killing at least five people and wounding dozens of others. Iraqis have been protesting for weeks against corruption, misgovernance and a lack of jobs.

Security forces opened fire on protesters in southern Iraq on Sunday, killing at least five people and wounding dozens of others, police and medical sources said, as weeks of unrest in Iraq continue.

Troops used force to disperse protesters who were trying to block roads leading to the port city of Umm Qasr in the oil-rich southern province of Basra, the sources said.

Umm Qasr is Iraq’s largest commodities port. It receives shipments of grain, vegetable oils, and sugar that help feed a country largely dependent on imported food.

There has been no official comment so far on the alleged killings.

Since October 1, Iraq’s capital, Baghdad, and south have been swept by mass demonstrations that have so far resulted in the deaths of at least 330 people.

On Sunday, the unrest continued in the city of Nassiriya, with some government offices set on fire, sources told the Reuters news agency.

Elsewhere in southern Iraq, hundreds of protesters burned tires and blocked some roads on Sunday in Basra, preventing government employees from reaching offices, police said.

Iraqi security forces also wounded at least 24 people in the holy city of Karbala overnight after opening fire on demonstrators to prevent them from reaching the local government headquarters, medical and security sources said.

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