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Protests Break Out All Over Iraq Against Government, Demanding Employment, Services, Resignation of Officials

February 20, 2011

Five demonstrations in Baghdad, demanding services improvement:

2/19/2011 1:50 PM

BAGHDAD / Aswat al-Iraq:

Five demonstrations have taken place in different parts of the Iraqi capital of Baghdad on Saturday, calling for the improvement of public services, the preparation of the government's "Rational Card," and the achievement of commitments given by  the officials, according to a security source.

"A number of demonstrations have taken place in different parts of the capital of Baghdad, demanding the improvement of public services, the first in al-Obeidy district, where dozens of citizens have gone to the streets, demanding such services and the granting of the commodies, cited in the government's 'Rational Card,' the security source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

He said that the "second demonstration took place in central Baghdad's al-Tahrir (Liberation) Square, where dozens of citizens raised the same demands, whilst the third took place in central Baghad's al-Firdous Squarre, carrying the same demands as well, and the fifth demonstration took place close to Baghdad Province's Council, demanding the increase of electric power, water, raising of salaries and the achievement of the promises made by the government, given to the citizens during the past elections."


Woman killed by gunman in Mosul

2/20/2011 6:21 PM

NINEWA / Aswat al-Iraq:

A woman was shot dead by an unidentified gunman in the city of Mosul on Sunday, a security source said.

“A gunman opened fire on a woman clad in a black khimar (loose Muslim headscarf) right after she got out of a taxi on the main street in al-Qadissiya neighborhood, eastern Mosul, killing her instantly,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

“The gunman managed to escape to an unknown place,” he added.

Mosul, the capital city of the unrest-ridden province of Ninewa, lies 405 km north of Baghdad.

AmR (TP)

Hundreds demonstrate in west Iraq's Ramadi city, demanding Governor's resignation:

2/20/2011 2:27 PM

ANBAR / Aswat al-Iraq:

Hundreds of demonstrators took to the streets of west Iraq's Ramadi city, the center of Anbar Province, on Sunday, demanding the resignation of the Province's Governor and the accounting of corruptive elements in the State offices, fighting financial and adminstrative corruption, an eyewitness said.

"Hundreds of Ramadi's citizens, including tribal chieftains and unemployed persons, have organized a demonstration on Sunday, demanding the resignation of the Governor, accounting of corruption element sin state bodies, fighting financial and administrative corruption, as well as rejection of the principle of federalism in Iraq," the source eyewitness told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

He said that the slogans raised by the demonstrators "were similar to those carried by demonstrators in other parts of Iraq, calling for public services and fighting corruption," adding that the demonstrators "have expressed support and readiness to share in the demonstrations, scheduled to take place in Baghdad on February 25th."

A security source in Ramadi has stated early in the day that the security forces have imposed strict measures before the beginning of the said demonstration at the center of Ramadi, the capital of Anbar Province.


Demonstration in southern Iraq's Thi-Qar Province, demanding employment chances:

2/20/2011 2:23 PM

THI-QAR / Aswat al-Iraq:

Hundreds of demonstrators, most of them university graduates and unemployed persons, took to the streets of southern Iraq's Thi-Qar Province on Sunday, demanding employment chances, according to a spokesman for the demonstrators.

"About 300 university graduates and unemployed persons have demonstrated in Dhi-Qar Province, demanding employment in government offices," Alaa al-Khafaji told Aswat al-Iraq news agency, adding that there were about 20 women among the demonstrators.

Khafaji demanded "a share in appointments for Thi-Qar Province, among the shares demanded by the Iraqi Parliament that exceeded 280,000."

Hundreds of demonstrators, among them tribal chieftains and religious men, have demonstrated in protest for lack of public services, demanding the cancellation of the municipal council in one of the Province's townships, which they set fie in it, but the police did not interfere to stop the attack.


Kurdish TV Channel burnt down while carrying reports on Sulaimaniya events

2/20/2011 10:56 AM

SULAIMANIYA / Aswat al-Iraq:

A group of armed men have attacked the office of the Kurdish (NRT) Channel in northern Sulaimaniya, completely burning it and wounding one of its guards, a security source said.

"About 30 armed men have broken through the Kurdish NRT Channel in the so-called "German Village" north of Sulaimaniya, wounding one of its guards in the chest and completely burning its office.
This caused disruptions to the transmission of the channel that used to carry out reports about recent demonstrations and the city," the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

Noteworthy is that hundreds of demonstrators have gone to the streets of Sulaimaniya last Thursday, demanding the improvement of public services and living standards, as well as fighting corruption and carrying out political reforms, during which about 7 of the demonstrators were killed and 47 others injured in shooting in front of the headquarters of the Kurdisan Democratic Party (KDP), where the demonstrators gathered.

Sulaimaniya Govenor, Pahruz Mohammed, had announced a curfew between 07:00 p.m.
and 07:00 a.m.
local time, whilst three headquarters of the Kurdish opposition Goran (Change) Movement were set on fire in Arbil, Dohuk and Suran cities, causing no injuries.

The Goran Movement had considered opening fire on civilians by the guards of the KDP's headquarters on civilian demonstrators as a "crime," demanding an emergency meeting of Kurdistan Parliament to discuss the current situation.

Meanwhile, an eyewitness told Aswat al-Iraq news agency that the said Channel "had been carrying out an experimental transmission over the past three weeks, and began its actual transmission three days ago, and had been carrying out reports about the demonstrations in Sulaimaniya, during which it carried video shots of a young man, called Rizwan, who was shot dead during the demonstrations, along with other shots by the security forces on the demonstrators, close the headquarters of the Kurdistan Democratic Party.

Noteworthy is that the said Channel, led by Twana Othman, who held the post of Editor-in-Chief of the Kurdish Hawlaty newspaper, that used to carry reports against the government of north Iraq's Kurdistan Region's government.


Sulaimaniya's clashes reach 14 injured, including policeman

2/20/2011 10:00 AM SULAIMANIYA / Aswat al-Iraq:

The number of wounded persons due to the clashes that took place in north Iraq's Kurdish city of Sulaimaniya on Saturday has reached 13 people injured, including a policeman, according to a statistic by the city's emergency hospital's director on Sunday. "Sulaimaniya's emergency hospital has received 13 demonstrators and a policeman, injured in clashes in the city during the demonstrations that took place on Saturday," Hawar Hassan Naqshabandy, told Aswat al-Iraq news agency, giving no further details.

A source close to the demonstrators told Aswat al-Iraq early on Saturday that "thousands of demonstrators went to the streets in Kani Iskan and Saray districts in the city, clashing with the Kurdish Asayish (security) forces, adding that "eight persons have been injured during the clashes that led to the detention of a number of demonstrators."

The above developments took place at a time when Sulaimaniya citizens have been worried against possibility of the renewal of clashes and violence acts between the demonstrators and security forces.

Hundreds of demonstrators have gone to the streets of Sulaimaniya last Thursday, demanding the improvement of services and living conditions, fighting corruption and carrying out political reforms, that injured about 50 persons, including some who lost their lives, following clashes in front of the headquarters of the Kurdistan Democratic Party in the city, where the demonstrators were gathered.

Tension continued on Friday with the spread of security, police and Peshmerga (Kurdish armed men) to restore security and prevent the renewal of violence acts, whilst dozens of young people demonstrated in the city's Saray square, along with thousands of supportes of the opposition's Goran (Change) Movement, in front of its headquarters, in protest to the use of violence against the demonstrators, who demanded the trial of those who opened fire on them.

The demonstrations and violence acts have created fear among Kurdistan residents, along with their stretch to other areas, whilst three headquarters of the Goran Movement in Arab, Dohuk and Soran cities were attacked, burnt and plundered, but caused no casualties.

The Vice-Chairman of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), Nichervan Barzani, had stated on Friday that the politbureaus of the KDP and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), the main ruling parties in Iraqi Kurdistan, have discussed the unification of their positions towards the incidents that took place in Sulaimaniya and to strive to avoid their extention to other areas in Kurdistan, reiterating the right of citizens to demonstrate, demanding reforms within the law.

Nichervan Barzani said that the KDP had received intelligence information about possibility for attacks against the Party's headquarters, adding that the security forces in Sulaimaniya were informed about that but he charged them with having "ignored the information."

Meanwhile, the President of north Iraq's Kurdistan Region, Massoud Barazani, had issued a statement, calling for the formation of a committee to investigate the said incidents and sending those who committed them to justice and calling on citizens and security bodies to carry out their duties to protect the headquarters of the parties and institutions in Region.

Barzani said that "enemies of Kurdistan people are continuing to creat a state of anarchy in the Region, reconfirming that "the Kurdistan people shall stand in the face of all attempts aimed to undermine the experience and achievements."


2nd soldier killed by gunmen fire in Mosul Saturday

2/19/2011 7:02 PM

NINEWA / Aswat al-Iraq: A soldier was killed by gunmen fire in eastern Mosul, the second incident of its kind in the city Saturday, a security source said.

“A soldier local of Najaf was killed today (Feb.
19) when gunmen opened fire on him in al-Hai al-Sinai’e, eastern Mosul, before escaping to an unknown place,” the source told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

“The Iraqi serviceman was on a leave of absence and was on his way to have his car repaired during a visit to a relative in Mosul,” the source added.

Earlier Saturday, a soldier was shot dead by gunmen in western Mosul.

Mosul, the capital city of the unrest-ridden multi-ethnic province of Ninewa, lies 405 km north of Baghdad.

AmR (TP)

kut's Sit-in demonstrators end their demonstration after getting promises to implement their demands:

2/19/2011 12:02 PM

WASSIT / Aswat al-Iraq:

The sit-in demonstrators have ended their demonstration in Kut city, the center of southern Iraq's Wassit Province on Saturday after they got a commitment by the Province's Council Chairman, to implement their demands, one of their sourrces told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.

"The sit-demonstrators have end their demonstration in Kut, Wassit Province, on Saturday following commitment they god from the Province's Council Chairman, Mahmoud Abdul-Ridha, to impelment all their demands," the source said, adding that "the demonstrators began a campaign to put an end for all remnants caused by the violence acts that took place in Kut city over the past few days."

"The persons, who are cleaning the remnants of the violence acts and demonstrations that took place over the past few days have taken the initiative to help the cleaning workers, with the support of the security forces for them," he said, adding that "life had returned to normal in the city of Kut."

Wassit Province had witnessed last Wednesday a demonstration that broke through its Province's building and its Council, burning the contracts in the Province's office, the Governor's Council and his residence, in protest to the deterioration of the services, granted to citizens and the shortage in the government's "Rational Card," and the delay in implementing the Council's decision to sack the Governor and necessity to account the corruptive elements.

About 700 people have carried out a sit-in demonstration on Thursday inside tents they set up in front of the Province's Council in Kut, preventing its Governor, Latif Hamd al-Turfa to enter his office and calling for his trial.

Wassit Council's Chairman, Mahmoud Abdul-Redha, had announced earliler that the Council of Ministers had agreed to please the demands of the demonstrators to support the Province's Council decision to sack Govenor, Latif Hamad al-Turfa, from his position.

Kut, the center of Wassit Province, is 180 kms to the southeast of Baghdad.

HEYET Condemned Barbaric Acts of Government Forces

Thursday, 17 February 2011 16:15

The Association of Muslim Scholars in Iraq (HEYET) published a press statement pointing out the result of criminal acts of government in suppression of public protest meetings in Wasit Province. The attack of government forces who shot at the crowd led death of three citizens while wounded reached at 60 people. 

In the statement HEYET stressed that the people have participated in the peaceful demonstrations demanding for the rights to be restored like social services, municipal services, electricity and so forth. Whereas government security forces attempted to suppress the peaceful crowd by reflecting their angers, emotions using barbarian tactics and shot at hundreds of people.

At the end of statement HEYET condemned such barbaric acts stressing the end of those criminals.


Protest Meeting in Wasit Province

Thursday, 17 February 2011 16:10

In Wasit province, dozens of Iraqis gathered in front of province assembly building demanding abolishment of local government and restoration of the rights that they demanded for. Local news sources narrated that the crowd demanded abolishment of local government, restoration of social services, put an end to financial and administrative corruption, judgement of corrupted officials and providing new fields for job opportunities. 


Thousands of Iraqis Took street in Nassiriya

Thursday, 17 February 2011 15:34

Thousands of people took the streets in Nasiriya city of Dhi Qar Province in protest of lack of services, financial and administrative corruption in the region. The protestors also burnt the municipality building demanding to topple incompetent government. 

Media sources confirmed the meeting saying: "Protestors set the municipality building of al Nasr 55 northern Nasiriya city on fire burning some rooms and material. Many army elements and rapid police forces were sent to the area for controlling the crowd. They have arrested dozens of protestors where many of them gathered in front of police directorate building for release of arrested people." 


Protest Meeting in karbala

Tuesday, 15 February 2011 16:19

People took the street in Karbala demanding for rehabilitation of the rigths, freedom, lack of social services and job opportunities. Sanitarian Syndicates Muhammad Tufan made a press release to the sources saying the protestors gathered in front of province assembly for demanding their rights to be return mphasizing that they also affirm the public revolution in Egypt. 


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