BAGHDAD, Nov. 4 (Xinhua) -- A total of 10 people were killed and more than 20 wounded in anti-government protests in Baghdad and Karbala over worsening living conditions and corruption, officials said Monday.
In the capital Baghdad, dozens of angry protesters blocked al-Ahrar Bridge in the city center, demanding comprehensive reforms, a security official told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.
The riot police clashed with the demonstrators and fired bullets in the air and tear gas canisters, leaving seven protesters killed and more than 10 wounded, the source said.
Separately, three demonstrators were killed and 12 protesters and security members wounded during demonstrations in the Iraqi city of Karbala, 110 km south of Baghdad, the Iraqi Independent High Commission for Human Rights said in a statement.
The statement said the protests, which took place in Karbala on Sunday night, developed into a clash between security forces and the demonstrators who attempted to storm the Iranian consulate in the city.
On Sunday night, Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi called for life to return to normal as protests continued across Iraq.
He said in a statement that the threat to oil facilities and the closure of roads had cost Iraq billions of U.S. dollars.
Demonstrations have been going on in Baghdad and other cities in central and southern Iraq since Oct. 25, demanding comprehensive reform, corruption, improvement of public services and job opportunities.