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Hundreds of Iraqi protesters march through capital ahead of vote


Hundreds of Iraqis march through central Baghdad to mark two years since mass anti-government protests erupted in Iraqi capital and southern provinces

Protesters, mostly young, had camped in the capital’s Tahrir Square for months, denouncing endemic corruption, poor services and unemployment.

Today, many in the protest movement are calling for a boycott of the elections scheduled for October 10, convinced that nothing will change. In particular, they denounce a series of targeted assassinations against civil society groups and outspoken activists for whom no one has been held responsible. The killings created a climate of fear and a widespread reluctance to participate in the vote, especially among young Iraqis who constitute the largest group of voters in Iraq.

“I am against participating in these elections because they do not make sense. These are the same ruling parties and nothing will change, ”said Walid al-Madani, a 39-year-old civil servant participating in Friday’s protest.

“We don’t want paradise, we want a nation,” read one of the banners carried by demonstrators who gathered on Friday in Fardous Square and marched towards Tahrir Square, the epicenter of the demonstrations. October 2019.

Another banner read, “You shall not silence Tishreen’s voice”, in Arabic for October, as Iraqis refer to the protests after the month they erupted.

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ABC News

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