Protesters attempted to storm the U.S. embassy in Iraq’s capital Baghdad to express their ire over American airstrikes that killed 24 members of Iraqi militia over the weekend.
According to details, protesters set on fire the outside fence of the U.S. embassy in Baghdad after 100 of them gathered near the embassy’s external gate in the Green zone.
The thousands of protesters were chanting “Death to America!” while demonstration outside the embassy compound, throwing rocks, shattering surveillance cameras, covering the walls with graffiti and demanding that the U.S. withdraw its forces from Iraq.
Iraq Interior Ministry official stated that Iraqi security forces used tear gas in an effort to disperse protesters.
U.S. President Donald Trump blamed Iran after demonstrators breached the compound’s outer wall and lit fires. Tensions are high after American airstrikes killed 24 members of an Iraqi militia.
It should be remembered that constant tensions and unrest prevails in Iraq as people are protesting against the government.
Thousands of protesters had blocked bridges, roads and buildings in several cities in southern Iraq on 22nd December. The protesters were demanding an independent prime minister as the deadline to choose an interim leader looms.
Baghdad was set to announce a provisional prime minister at midnight on 22nd December following the resignation last month of Adil Abdul-Mahdi.
Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi’s resigned on 20th December. President Barham Salih and parliament had since missed several deadlines to appoint a new prime minister.
Mahdi and his government had agreed to stay on in a caretaker role until a new prime minister is approved.
But Mahdi’s resignation failed to satisfy anti-government protesters who have said it is not enough for a new prime minister to take over — they are demanding changes to the entire political system, which they call corrupt, inept, and say it does little to help impoverished Iraqis despite the nation’s oil wealth.