Iraqi protesters blocked a number of vital bridges and roads in the capital Baghdad on Monday as anti-government demonstrations continued for a tenth day.
Demonstrators also sealed off roads and government institutions in the provinces of Babylon, Dhi Qar, Muthanna, Diwaniya, Wasit and Maysan in southern and central Iraq, according to Anadolu Agency reporters.
Monday’s escalation came a day after protestors attacked the Iranian consulate in the Shia holy city of Karbala, bringing down the Iranian flag and replacing it with Iraqi flag.
Iraq has been rocked by a second wave of protests since last week against deep-seated corruption, unemployment and lack of basic services.
At least 260 people have been killed and 12,000 others injured since the demonstrations began on Oct. 25, according to Iraq’s High Commission of Human Rights.
Anger has been building in Iraq in recent years due to rising unemployment and rampant corruption. Many people in the country have limited access to basic services such as electricity and clean water.
According to World Bank figures, Iraq’s youth unemployment is around 25%. It is also ranked the 12th most-corrupt country in the world by several transparency organizations.
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