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Iraq Protests: Over 489 Dead and Nearly 23,000 Wounded

Tahrir-Square in Iraq Iraq Protests: Tens of thousands of Iraqi people protest since 1 October 2019

The head of the Iraqi High Commission for Human Rights (IHCHR), Aqeel Al-Moussawi, announced that the number of people killed in the Iraq protests reached 489, including 15 security personnel, since the beginning of October.

According to Al-Arabiya website’s report on 25 December 2019, Al-Moussavi added in a television interview that nearly 22,799 people have been injured since the outbreak of Iraq protests. This was also published by the IHCHR page on Facebook

The Iraq protests increased on Tuesday night and in the early hours of Wednesday morning, against the new election law approved by parliament on December 24.

The Iraq protests continue in Tahrir Square in Baghdad, southern provinces of Dhi Qar, Nasiriyah, and Basra. Demonstrators target all political factions in the Iraqi Parliament in their slogans.

Al-Arabiya website reported on 25 December 2019 that the protesters torched the headquarters of the “Dawa” party, “Tiar Al-Hekmat”, “Badr Organization” and “Asaib Ahl Al-Haq” in the city of Diwaniyah, the capital of Qadisiya province, south of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad.

This comes after the assassination of activist Thaer Al-Tayeb in Diwaniya.

Al-Arabiya added: The Iraqi comedian artist, Awad Fadel, said that he was targeted by an assassination attempt in the capital, Baghdad. He emphasized that targeting public figures was an attempt to intimidate the demonstrators.

The Asaib Ahl Al-Haq militias, being the main paramilitary force affiliated to the Iranian regime, has published a list of more than 700 names of Iraqi journalists and political activists inside and outside Iraq, threating them to death, according to a December 18 report published by The Levant website.

On the other hand, the demonstrators blocked the Mohammed Al-Qasim Highway in central Baghdad, and created roadblocks in main roads in Najaf, by burning tires.

The new Iraqi election law

The new Iraqi election law permits the system of individual candidacy in place of party lists and stipulates that the candidate with the highest votes wins.

The law provides for resorting to draw if the votes of the candidates for the last seat are equal, and when a seat becomes vacant in Parliament, the highest candidate in the constituency shall fill it.

Also, every member of parliament represents a specific electoral district, and electoral districts are divided based on an electoral district for each district in the governorate.

According to the new election law, the Ministry of Planning provides the commission with the number, boundaries, and population of the districts.

The Iraqi people refused the new election law and continued to protest.

Al-Hurra website wrote on 26 December 2019 that by midnight, a banner was raised in the Tahrir Square, saying “Don’t cheat. Election law does not represent us,” and Twitter users used the “#election_law_does_not_represent_us ” (#?????_??????????_????????) to express their rejection of it.

About Siavosh Hosseini (354 Articles)
My background is in the visual arts, particularly in photojournalism. I have had the opportunity to cover scores of international artistic and news events in the US and across Europe since the mid-1980s. I was active in television newsrooms and production as a graphic designer and producer for more than 12 years in different television and news outfits in Europe.

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