Security forces and members of the Iranian-backed Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq (AAH) militia reportedly killed at least 25 protesters in anti-government demonstrations held across Iraq on Friday, October 25, denouncing perceived government corruption, inadequate provision of public services, and a lack of job opportunities. Notably, at least eight protesters were killed in Baghdad on Friday, including five struck by tear gas canisters; in Nasiriyah (Dhi Qar province), AAH members fired on protesters attempting to set fire to their offices, killing six. Protest-related deaths were also recorded in Amarah (Maysan province), Basra (Basra province), and Samawah (Al-Muthanna province). Related protests have been reported in Najaf and Wasit provinces.
A heightened security presence is to be expected in Baghdad and other urban centers over the coming days as protests continue. Disruptions to internet and telecommunications services are possible amid the unrest. Localized traffic disruptions are to be expected around protest sites, and clashes between protesters and security forces cannot be ruled out.
Demonstrations broke out on October 1 to protest perceived government corruption, inadequate provision of public services, and a lack of job opportunities. Dozens have been killed and thousands wounded in the following weeks of unrest.
Individuals in Baghdad and across Iraq are advised to closely monitor the situation, avoid all protests and large public gatherings due to potential violence, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.
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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