UN top envoy to Iraq says protesters must be protected

Source: Xinhua| 2020-01-26 02:35:39|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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BAGHDAD, Jan. 25 (Xinhua) -- The Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert on Saturday said anti-government protesters in Iraq must be protected, and their protests sites must not be cleared violently by the security forces.

"Steps taken so far will remain hollow if not completed. The people must be served and protected, not violently oppressed," Hennis-Plasschaert tweeted on the official page of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).

"Unaccountability and indecisiveness are unworthy of Iraqi hopes, courageously expressed for four months now. While death and injury tolls continue to rise," said Hennis-Plasschaert who also heads UNAMI.

Earlier in the day, Iraqi security forces cleared many protests sites in Baghdad and other Iraqi cities, sparking clashes between the protesters and the security forces that left three protesters killed and 15 others wounded.

Mass anti-government demonstrations have been launched in Baghdad and other cities in central and southern Iraq since early October, demanding comprehensive reform, fight against corruption, better public services and more jobs.