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Iraqi demonstrators unmask and go out into the street in a pandemic

Baghdad (AP)-Thousands of Iraqis (most not wearing protective masks) appeared on the streets of Baghdad on Friday to show support for radical clerics ahead of next year’s elections, coronavirus It aroused the fear of a surge in cases.

Supporters gathered in Tahrir Square, the capital city, which was once the epicenter of large-scale anti-government protests, to support Mokutada al-Saddle, who leads a powerful political party, ahead of the federal elections scheduled for June next year. Shown.

As Iraq remains a country at high risk of coronavirus infection, most of the followers of Arsador stood unmasked in the square and said, “Yes, yes to our leaders.” The crowd then stood side by side at noon for Friday’s prayer.

Of the 544,000 confirmed cases, more than 12,000 died of the virus in Iraq, according to Ministry of Health statistics. The average daily infection rate is 2,400 per day, but health care workers say the number may be higher as many symptomatic Iraqis stay at home and avoid being tested in hospitals. I will.

Iraq is the country with the second highest outbreak and death toll in the region after Iran.

Arsador leads the Sylune party, which has a majority in parliament. He has taken steps in preparation for the elections scheduled for June next year. His followers sought demonstrations in support of leaders’ call for public participation in the vote.

“Iraqi people and al-Saddle followers will have one saying,” said Ibrahim al-Jabili, director of the Al-Saddle office north of Baghdad.

Observers consider the protest to be a sign of Arsador’s willingness to send a message to other political parties that the clergy are still influential on the streets of Iraq.

Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadimi called for an election in June next year, a year earlier than expected. It was a major demand of rebels who paralyzed the streets of Iraq when tens of thousands of people demonstrated last October.

Elections will theoretically be held under new legislation approved by lawmakers this year, allowing more independent candidates to run. The Iraqi electoral college said it was ready to hold an early election in time if the government allocated a budget for voting.

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Iraqi demonstrators unmask and go out into the street in a pandemic

Source link Iraqi demonstrators unmask and go out into the street in a pandemic

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