While some Iraqi officials want to evict US forces, the protesters are not focused on the US. Iraqi political leaders, including Muqtada al-Sadr, have hedged, agreeing to work with the Iranian-backed Popular Mobilization Unit militias and also supporting the protesters. Fires were lit by protesters across parts of Baghdad and closed roads. Mohammed al Qasim bridge and Expressway became a center of clashes. Locals said as many as 50 protesters were wounded and some reports indicated that two were killed.
Protesters in #Najaf province in #Iraq burns the poster of #Iran’s former General Commander of #IRGC (Quds Force) Qassim Sulaimani, and former deputy head of PMF, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.#IraqProtests #العراق pic.twitter.com/saiwBjCn6i— Lawk Ghafuri (@LawkGhafuri) January 19, 2020
It was not clear who attacked the protesters Sunday. In the past, the protesters have said militias backed by Iran have shot them using snipers. Local riot police have also used tear-gas canisters to shoot people in the head in the past.Dozens of roads were closed on Sunday night due to the protests. Riot police tried to push the protesters back to Tahrir Square, but they were prevented from moving them.Activists worry the government will use harsher methods in the coming days. But the protesters want the parliament dissolved and say they will continue pushing their demands. Live fire has been reported in Basra, Nasiriyah and Baghdad.
Huge amount of protesters have been wounded tonight in #Baghdad in Muhammed al-Qasim highway street as security forces clashed with the protesters who blocked the highway. Footage shows protesters are being transported into health points in Tahrir Square.#IraqProtests #العراق pic.twitter.com/qrZzOSxdJt— Lawk Ghafuri (@LawkGhafuri) January 19, 2020