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Iraq Security Forces kill 9 protestors taking the total to 339 since October

Iraq Security Forces kill 9 protestors taking the total to 339 since October.

Iraq Security Forces kill 9 protestors taking the total to 339 since October.

Anti-government protests erupted in early October and have swollen into the largest demonstrations since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. Iraq’s state news agency quoted the health minister on Sunday as saying 111 people had been killed, including protesters and members from security forces, without breaking down the tally or elaborating over what period.

It was the first official figure issued by a government official since Oct. 25.

A government report last month had said there were 157 deaths during the first week of October. Protests paused after then and resumed on Oct. 25.

Protesters are demanding the overthrow of a political class seen as corrupt and serving foreign powers while many Iraqis languish in poverty without jobs, healthcare or education. In Nassiriya, security forces used live ammunition and tear gas canisters to disperse protesters who had gathered overnight on three bridges.

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