Monday anti-government demonstrations in the Iraqi city of Karbala resulted in 18 deaths and 800 injuries, the national human rights watchdog told Sputnik Tuesday. ”According to the information that we have received from activists and groups and non-governmental organizations regarding yesterday’s events, we can speak of 18 killed at the protests in Karbala with more than 800 injured,” Ali Bayati, the Iraqi High Commission on Human Rights spokesman, told Sputnik. Bayati added that the Karbala Health Department officially confirmed death of only one person.
Nationwide protests in Iraq started in early October and developed in waves of escalation. People demand the ouster of the government, as well as economic reforms, better living conditions, social welfare and an end to corruption. As rallies grew more violent, the government had to declare a curfew and cut Internet access in Baghdad and five other regions at some point. Several checkpoints on the border with Iran were also shut amid the escalation. (UNI)