Iraq announces release of 2,700 protestors detained since October
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Iraqi authorities on Wednesday announced the release of 2,700 protesters that security forces had detained since nationwide demonstrations began in early October.
The Media Center of the Supreme Judicial Council said in a statement that investigative bodies charged with examining the cases of demonstrations made the decision to drop charges and release them.
The statement added that an investigation is still underway for 107 detainees “for the crimes attributed to them according to the law.”
Iraq has been engulfed in anti-government protests for over two months now, where over 500 people have been killed in clashes between security forces and demonstrators, and thousands of others injured.
The protests in Iraq reflect widespread dissatisfaction with the economy, availability of jobs, the dismal state of public services, and widespread government corruption.
The United Nations, as well as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch (HRW), have called for an end to the bloodshed and urged security forces to show restraint against protestors.
Demonstrators in Iraq are calling for radical change in Iraq’s political system, which they say fails to address their needs, but instead serves the interests of a small governing elite.
The developments have forced Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul Mahdi to hand in his resignation. In a special session held in Baghdad on Dec. 1, the Iraqi Parliament voted to accept Abdul Mahdi’s resignation.
Editing by John J. Catherine