Sporadic clashes continue in anti-gov't protests in Iraq

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BAGHDAD, Jan. 28 (Xinhua) -- Sporadic clashes between the security forces and anti-government demonstrators continued on Tuesday in Baghdad and other cities in central and southern Iraq, security sources said.

In the capital Baghdad, clashes erupted in the city center's al-Khalani Square, where the riot police used tear gas canisters and fired bullets in the air to disperse dozens of protesters, leaving 15 of them wounded and suffocated, an Interior Ministry official told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

Meanwhile, hundreds of demonstrators gathered at al-Tahrir Square, the epicenter of Iraq's anti-government protests, showing persistence in achieving their demands for reform in the political system, anti-corruption and better services through demonstrations.

In Nasriyah, capital city of Dhi Qar Province, hundreds of demonstrators, including college students, rallied and blocked most bridges over the Euphrates River that bisects the city, a provincial security source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

The protests have also continued since the morning in Diwaniyah, capital city of al-Qadsiyah Province, as well as in the provinces of Basra, Maysan, Wasit and Karbala, according to local media reports.

In the holy Shiite city of Najaf, 160 km south of Baghdad, hundreds of demonstrators rallied in the city center and issued a statement that demanded the nomination of a new prime minister who meets the demands of the demonstrators.

The demonstrators also demanded the parliament end the approval of the electoral law and set a date for early elections within six months, according to the statement.

Mass anti-government demonstrations have continued across Iraq since early October 2019, demanding comprehensive reform, fight against corruption, better public services and more job opportunities. Enditem

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