Baghdad protest turns deadly as youths block highway

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Iraqi riot police opened fire Tuesday amid clashes with anti-government protesters on a central Baghdad highway, killing one person and wounding over a dozen people, officials said, the latest since violence erupted again last week between demonstrators and security forces.


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The clashes on the key Mohammed al-Qassim highway broke out when riot police moved in to disperse a crowd of mostly young men who had gathered there. The protesters burned tires, halting traffic along the key artery and some protesters hurled Molotov cocktails, or fire bombs at the riot police.

Police shot live rounds and fired tear gas canisters at the crowd. At least 14 protesters were wounded, their injuries ranging from severe to moderate. One protester died after being struck by a tear gas canister to the head, according to police and medical officials and activists.

As the violence escalated, the police pulled back, allowing demonstrators to take over the thoroughfare, eyewitnesses said, speaking on condition of anonymity, fearing reprisals.

Meanwhile, outgoing Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi condemned an overnight triple-rocket attack targeting the heavily fortified Green Zone, the seat of Iraqs government, and ordered an investigation into the incident, military spokesman Maj. Gen. Abdul Karim Khalaf said. The Katyusha rockets had fallen near the U.S. Embassy but caused no casualties.

The Mohammed al-Qassim highway connects areas inRead More – Source