Hundreds of supporters of Shiite leader Muqtada al-Sadr made their way to the high-security Green Zone in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, on Wednesday to impose political reforms. Government institutions, embassies and parliament are located in that area. Despite police tear gas campaigns, some managed to enter Parliament House.
Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi called on the demonstrators to immediately withdraw from the Green Zone. He stressed that the police will protect state institutions and foreign missions and maintain security and order. Eyewitnesses reported injuries among the demonstrators with firearms.
Ten months after parliamentary elections last October, Iraq is in a political stalemate. Negotiations on forming a government and appointing a new prime minister are not progressing.
Demonstrators are mainly protesting against Prime Minister’s candidate Mohamed Shiaa al-Sudani, a 52-year-old former minister and former governor of a governorate. It was brought up by the coalition of Shiite groups loyal to Iran, which brings together opponents of Sadr.
Thousands of Sadr’s supporters gathered outside the Green Zone earlier today to demonstrate against his possible appointment. Some protesters said they would remain in the area until their demands were met.
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