Iraqi university graduates take to the streets again

The protesters’ return to the streets following a period of relative calm is not limited to the capital, also extending to other cities in the south of the country.
Monday 10/08/2020
Anti-government protesters gather for a demonstration demanding better public services and against corruption outside the provincial council building, in Basra, Iraq, Friday, Aug. 7, 2020. (AP)
Anti-government protesters gather for a demonstration demanding better public services and against corruption outside the provincial council building, in Basra, Iraq, Friday, Aug. 7, 2020. (AP)

BAGHDAD – Hundreds of demonstrators with higher education degrees closed down a governorate building, a vital bridge and a number of streets in the centre of the Iraqi capital Baghdad on Sunday in protest against poor living conditions.

The protesters gathered in front of the Baghdad governorate building in the Al-Sinak area and closed the building, the vital Al-Sinak Bridge and a number of nearby streets, demanding job opportunities.

For years, Iraq has been facing a severe unemployment crisis among young people  in the country, especially those who hold diplomas.

In recent months, the crisis has intensified in light of the difficult financial situation and the ramifications of the coronavirus pandemic, which forced the authorities to take strict measures restricting movement and further worsened the economic situation.

Anti-government protesters gather for a demonstration demanding better public services and against corruption outside the provincial council building, in Basra, Iraq, Friday, Aug. 7, 2020. (AP)
Anti-government protesters gather for a demonstration demanding better public services and against corruption outside the provincial council building, in Basra, Iraq, Friday, Aug. 7, 2020. (AP)

The protesters’ return to the streets following a period of relative calm is not limited to the capital, also extending to other cities in the south of the country.

On Sunday, demonstrators stormed the building of the Dhi Qar Governorate to protest against the deterioration of services and demand the resignation of local officials.

According to eyewitnesses, hundreds of residents of Al-Fahd district in Dhi Qar arrived in the city of Nasiriyah and stormed the governorate building, chanting slogans denouncing the decline in the quality of services and accusing officials of corruption and mismanagement.

Hundreds of residents of Al-Aqiqa district, east of Dhi Qar governorate, also blocked the road leading to Suq Al-Shoyokh district, demanding the resignation of officials in charge of managing the services’ file, according to media reports.