Three protesters wounded, as security troops disperse demonstrations in Basra

Protesters block the road to Iraq’s Umm Qasr port, south of Basra, Iraq July 13, 2018. REUTERS/Essam al-Sudani

Basra ( Three protesters were wounded on Tuesday as Iraqi security troops attempted dispersing demonstrations near Basra provincial building, BasNews reported.

According to sources from inside the city, security troops opened fire against protesters near the provincial building, as they were urging investigations on the killing of Yasser Mekki, a demonstrator, who was killed on Monday after being tortured by governmental forces.

Earlier today, sources was quoted saying that head of the Basra Provincial Council Walid al-Kitan ordered the government building in Basra to be evacuated from staffers for security reasons.

At least ten protesters suffered asphyxia due to tear gas highly used by the troops.

On Tuesday, protesters by Basra residents were renewed near the building. They also took part in the funeral of Mekki.

Troops used live ammunition on Monday to disperse the mass protests staged in Basra. Roads were blocked by tyres set on fire.

Late on Monday, the Iraqi High Commission for Human Rights immediate investigation on the murder of Mekki.

Several provinces in central and southern Iraq has been witnessing mass protests for more than two months to voice demands of better services including drinking water and electricity as well as countering corruption.

Observers believe protests and sit-ins will expand due to ongoing assaults by security forces against peaceful protesters and to voice demands of better services, especially in light of negligence by the government toward protesters demands and the security crackdown.

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