Reporting by PMOI/MEK
Iraq, February 8, 2020—Demonstrations were held across Iraq on Friday, February 7, protesting the candidacy of Mohamed Tawfiq Allawi for the country’s prime ministry post and the crimes committed by militia members of Muqtada Sadr in Najaf, Karbala and other cities across Iraq.
The Health Department in Najaf reported 23 protesters were killed by Sadr’s forces on Wednesday and another 197 were left injured with 16 being in very serious conditions.
In Baghdad, demonstrations were also continuing in the capital’s iconic Tahrir Square. The demonstrators were seen condemning the crimes against protesters in Najaf on Wednesday and rejecting Allawi’s candidacy.
In Karbala, demonstrators held a massive rally condemning recent violence resorted to by Sadr’s forces. In Nasiriyah’s Habubi Square demonstrators were seen chanting slogans against Sadr’s forces.
On Friday, Dhi Qar Province of southern Iraq witnessed college students holding a march against the Iranian regime’s meddling in their country and Allawi's appointment to form the country’s next cabinet.
The city of Diwaniya, the capital of Qadessiya Province, witnessed college students holding a demonstration in Qadessiya University and chanting in support of demonstrators in Baghdad, Najaf, and Karbala.
Demonstrators in the city of Al Ramitheh, capital of Al Mothana Province in southern Iraq was also the scene of protests and slogans being chanted against Muqtada Sadr. In the city of Samawa, also in this province, demonstrators were seen chanting against the Iranian regime and emphasizing that Tehran has used its influence to have Allawi named as the country’s next prime minister to establish the new cabinet.
Sadr’s followers attacked the protesters in Baghdad’s Tahrir Square, setting fire to eight of their tents. Students of Mostansariyeh University were also protesting at this site and this crime raised even more anger among the demonstrators.
Protesters in Basrah continued their demonstrations and blocked a major road leading to oil storage tanks in Faw, southern Iraq.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo issued a statement on Thursday condemning the killing spree in Najaf. “We strongly condemn the violence in Najaf. Peaceful protesters must be allowed to demonstrate for a government free of Iranian influence without facing death and violence. The government must bring the killers to justice,” Secretary Pompeo said on Twitter.
We strongly condemn the violence in Najaf. Peaceful protesters must be allowed to demonstrate for a government free of Iranian influence without facing death and violence. The government must bring the killers to justice.— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) February 7, 2020
Babylon, southern Iraq – Demonstrators protesting the Najaf massacre and the candidacy of Mohamed Tawfiq Allawi as the country’s next prime minister to launch a cabinet
Najaf, southern Iraq – Demonstrators rallying in a square to protest the recent massacre by Sadr’s forces