Iraqi protesters converged on Baghdad's Tahrir Square, the epicentre of the four-month anti-government protest movement, to condemn the militia attack on Najaf protesters late night on Wednesday.
A day after almost a million people marched in Baghdad against the presence of the US military in the country, the Iraqi government seeks an end to protests against its rule.
Barham Salih says he's "ready to resign" rather than designate Asaad al Edani – the candidate of a pro-Iranian coalition for the post of the prime minister – who he said would be rejected by protesters.
The nomination was promptly rejected by Iraqi protesters who want an independent candidate to take over the government, officials said.
Dozens others were wounded in clashes with security forces as protesters burned car tyres on roads and outside many public offices in the southern city of Nasiriyah, some 300 kilometres south of the capital Baghdad.
Protesters retook control of half of Ahrar Bridge, which leads to the other side of the Tigris River near the heavily fortified Green Zone, the seat of Iraq’s government.
Demonstrations throughout Iraq intensified on Saturday and Sunday, but protesters are finding themselves being pushed back by clouds of tear gas and a heavy security presence.
In the southern city of Basra, seven protesters were killed on Thursday and early Friday, driving up the death toll since October 1 when demonstrations over unemployment began.
The demonstrator died after he was hit in his head by a gas canister in the protests that erupted late on Tuesday in front of the Basra Governorate building.
Iraqis have launched two waves of mass protests this month, calling for the resignation of a government they blame for corruption, economic mismanagement and poor public services.
The most recent protests differ radically in their demands and the harsh government response has raised the stak.
At least three workers were injured at a compound housing international oil companies in Iraq's southern province of Basra.
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