By Haydar Karaalp
BAGHDAD (AA) - Iraqi protesters on Wednesday set fire to the Iranian Consulate in the southern city of Najaf, according to Anadolu Agency reporters based in the region.
The protesters stormed the compound and set fire to the entire facility, but consulate staffers had evacuated beforehand, said police sources who asked not to be named due to restrictions on speaking to the media.
Following the incident, Iraq’s Najaf Operations Command announced a curfew, not saying how long it would continue.
Separately, security forces and protesters clashed in the southern Musenna, Qadisiyyah and Ziqar provinces, and dozens of protesters were reportedly wounded.
Iraq has been rocked by mass protests since early October against poor living conditions and corruption. The demands later spiraled into calls for dissolving Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi's government.
According to Iraq's High Commission for Human Rights, at least 346 Iraqis have been killed and around 15,000 have been injured since the protests began on Oct. 1.
*Writing by Ali Murat Alhas