Activists had planned a demonstration in the Yaseen Khrebit area of Basra on the afternoon of Thursday, November 29 (local time). The protest was reportedly organized to demand improved services. A heightened security presence and residual transportation disruptions are to be expected near the demonstration site over the coming hours. A return of related demonstrations is to be expected in Basra province beginning December 1.
Protesters denouncing high unemployment rates and demanding improved services clashed with security forces outside the Basra Oil Company headquarters on November 27. Security forces forcibly dispersed the protesters, who set tires ablaze and temporarily blocked traffic on Highway 6. Related protests have been held outside the facility for over three weeks.
Basra was the stage of violent protests in summer 2018, which culminated on September 7 when protesters set fire to several government buildings, including the Iranian Consulate, the provincial government building, and the Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq group headquarters. While the scale of protests has decreased in recent weeks, demonstrations continue to be held.
Individuals in Basra are advised to closely monitor the situation, avoid all protests and large public gatherings as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities.
The security environment in Iraq remains complex. Although travel is possible in some areas with proper security protocols in place, other areas should be considered strictly off limits. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to all travel.
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