Health Minister reveals number of casualties in Basra protests, as security imposes curfew

Ten people were killed and 60 others wounded during demonstrations on Friday alone.

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Iraqi Ministry of Health has revealed the number of casualties during demonstrations in the past few days in Basra as Iraqi security forces take strict measures to prevent new protests.

In a statement on Saturday, the Ministry of Health said 205 people were killed and wounded in demonstrations across Basra province in the past week.

According to the statement, 15 people were killed, and 190 others were wounded, including security forces. It added that most of the injured had left the hospitals after receiving treatment.

In a separate statement, Health Ministry spokesperson Saif al-Badr said 10 people were killed and 60 others wounded during demonstrations on Friday alone.

The Iraqi government has taken strict measures to prevent the protesters from taking to the streets again.

On Saturday, a significant number of Rapid Response Forces and the Iran-backed Hashd al-Shaabi militias were deployed in the city during the government-imposed curfew from 4-11 p.m. local time, Iraqi media reported.

For several days in a row, hundreds of protesters have been decrying the chronic lack of basic services provided to residents in Basra, namely clean water and regular electricity.

Emboldened by anger at the recent deaths of demonstrators and reports that over 6,000 residents had been hospitalized for drinking impure water, they poured into the streets on Thursday and Friday, setting fire to many political party offices, government buildings, and the Iranian consulate.

Editing by Karzan Sulaivany