Iraq: Ex-parliament speaker calls for gov’t resignation

Iraq: Ex-parliament speaker calls for gov’t resignation

At least 100 people have been killed in protests in Baghdad, southern provinces since earlier this week

By Hussein al-Amir

BAGHDAD (AA) – Former Parliament Speaker Osama al-Nujaifi on Saturday called on Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi to resign amid ongoing protests in the country against poor living conditions and corruption.

At least 100 people have been killed and hundreds injured in protests that rocked the capital Baghdad and the country’s southern provinces over the past days.

Protesters have been demanding Abdul-Mahdi to resign as well as improvements in living conditions and an end to corruption.

“We call on the government to resign, form a new cabinet and hold an early election under UN supervision,” al-Najaifi, the leader of the Iraqi Decision Coalition, said in a statement.

He said Abdul-Mahdi’s government, which has been formed one year ago, failed to deal with the demonstrations which broke out on Tuesday.

Several Iraqi politicians called on the Iraqi government to resign, including firebrand Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr and former premier Haidar al-Abadi.

Discontent has been growing in Iraq in recent years due to rising unemployment rates and rampant corruption. Many in the country have limited access to basic services such as electricity and clean water, and the unemployment level is around 10%.

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