Protests in southern Iraq to demand better services, jobs

Laith Hussein says protesters gathered outside the local government building on Sunday and closed the roads leading to the main oil fields north and west of Basra.

There were also similar protests on Saturday in Baghdad.

Hussein says the demonstrators in Basra also forced the authorities to close the vital port of Um Qasr in the Persian Gulf.

The Basra protests overflowed on Tuesday, when security forces opened fire, killing one and wounding five, spreading to other provinces in a matter of days.

The authorities responded by deploying troops and blocking the Internet in Iraq.

The government promised to create jobs and announced allocations for service projects, but that did not alleviate the protesters.

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