Clashes in Baghdad leave one dead and dozens hurt as anti-government protests continue

Clashes in Baghdad leave one dead and dozens hurt as anti-government protests continue
By Mark Armstrong with Reuters
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Anti-government protests in Iraq continued over the weekend with medical sources claiming one person was killed and over 90 injured


One person was killed and a further 91 wounded in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad as ongoing protests turned violent on Saturday.

Tens of thousands of Iraqis held a mass anti-government rally, occupying the central Tahrir Square and blocking roads to a major port.

The wave of demonstrations is the biggest since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. Protesters are demanding the removal of what they see as a corrupt political elite, and more jobs and better services.

"We want our rights for we don't have any, no jobs or work," claimed one protester. "Privileges are only for the (political) parties."

Protests have accelerated dramatically in recent days, drawing huge crowds from across sectarian and ethnic divides.

They have been comparatively peaceful by day, becoming more violent after dark as police use tear gas and rubber bullets to battle self-proclaimed "revolutionary" youths.

More than 250 people were killed in October.

The government of Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi, which has only been in office for one year, has so far failed to come up with an adequate response to the protests.

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