Iraqis gather in Baghdad to commemorate the third anniversary of the "October Revolution"

Iraqis gather in Baghdad to commemorate the third anniversary of the "October Revolution" The Iraqi capital, Baghdad, witnessed a gathering of large numbers of Iraqi demonstrators, who demanded the overthrow of the regime, coinciding with the third anniversary of the outbreak of the anti-government "October Revolution".  Hundreds of Iraqis gathered in Tahrir Square in central Baghdad, on Saturday, to commemorate the anti-government protests that erupted in 2019, amid tight security and a long-running political crisis in the country.  In anticipation of street violence, security personnel deployed checkpoints throughout the city, closed bridges and squares, and erected walls on some bridges leading to the fortified Green Zone that houses government headquarters and foreign embassies.  The protesters waved the Iraqi flag and chanted, "We want to bring down the regime."  A few meters from the square, security forces fired tear gas to disperse stone-throwing protesters, who had earlier tried to demolish a wall blocking the Jumhuriya Bridge leading to the Green Zone across the Tigris River, according to a Reuters reporter who witnessed the incident.  A military statement stated that some "infiltrating elements" among the demonstrators were attacking the security forces with Molotov cocktails and hunting rifles.  In 2019, protests erupted against the government of then-Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi, during which demonstrators demanded reform of a political system they saw as too corrupt and making most Iraqis poor.  More than 560 people, mostly unarmed protesters, who also included members of the security forces, were killed in the wave of popular protests as Iraqi security forces and unidentified gunmen suppressed the protests.  Abdul-Mahdi resigned under the pressure of the protests, and the Iraqi cleric Muqtada al-Sadr was the biggest winner after that in the elections last October.  Subsequently, in June, al-Sadr withdrew all of his deputies, or nearly a quarter of parliament, and resorted to street protests after his movement failed to form a government, leading to clashes that were the worst in the country's history in years.  Saturday's gathering raised fears of more unrest and tension among politicians, which could delay the formation of the government after al-Sadr withdrew from political life at the end of August.  Four rockets landed in the Green Zone, on Wednesday, during a partial closure while parliament was in session, injuring seven security personnel, and four other rockets landed from eastern Baghdad in the vicinity of the region on Thursday.

The Iraqi capital, Baghdad, witnessed a gathering of large numbers of Iraqi demonstrators, who demanded the overthrow of the regime, coinciding with the third anniversary of the outbreak of the anti-government "October Revolution".

Hundreds of Iraqis gathered in Tahrir Square in central Baghdad, on Saturday, to commemorate the anti-government protests that erupted in 2019, amid tight security and a long-running political crisis in the country.

In anticipation of street violence, security personnel deployed checkpoints throughout the city, closed bridges and squares, and erected walls on some bridges leading to the fortified Green Zone that houses government headquarters and foreign embassies.

The protesters waved the Iraqi flag and chanted, "We want to bring down the regime."

A few meters from the square, security forces fired tear gas to disperse stone-throwing protesters, who had earlier tried to demolish a wall blocking the Jumhuriya Bridge leading to the Green Zone across the Tigris River, according to a Reuters reporter who witnessed the incident.

A military statement stated that some "infiltrating elements" among the demonstrators were attacking the security forces with Molotov cocktails and hunting rifles.

In 2019, protests erupted against the government of then-Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi, during which demonstrators demanded reform of a political system they saw as too corrupt and making most Iraqis poor.

More than 560 people, mostly unarmed protesters, who also included members of the security forces, were killed in the wave of popular protests as Iraqi security forces and unidentified gunmen suppressed the protests.

Abdul-Mahdi resigned under the pressure of the protests, and the Iraqi cleric Muqtada al-Sadr was the biggest winner after that in the elections last October.

Subsequently, in June, al-Sadr withdrew all of his deputies, or nearly a quarter of parliament, and resorted to street protests after his movement failed to form a government, leading to clashes that were the worst in the country's history in years.

Saturday's gathering raised fears of more unrest and tension among politicians, which could delay the formation of the government after al-Sadr withdrew from political life at the end of August.

Four rockets landed in the Green Zone, on Wednesday, during a partial closure while parliament was in session, injuring seven security personnel, and four other rockets landed from eastern Baghdad in the vicinity of the region on Thursday.
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