The cries of the Iraqi youth returned to the capital, Baghdad, today, Friday, to correct the compass of demands and directions, less than two weeks before the date of the elections scheduled for the tenth of October.
Hundreds flocked to the Iraqi capital to mark the second anniversary of the start of the unprecedented popular protests in 2019.
Amid a heavy security presence, the demonstrators, who marched towards Tahrir Square, raised Iraqi flags and pictures of young men killed during the previous demonstrations, which claimed the lives of about 600 people and injured more than 30,000.
A demonstration in Baghdad to mark the second anniversary of the 2019 protests (AFP)
We want a country, we want a change
The protesters’ sleeves also waved pictures of activists who were assassinated during the past two years, including Ihab al-Wazni, head of the protests coordination in Karbala, who was shot dead last May by armed men in front of his house with pistols fitted with silencers.
While others raised banners reading “When will we see the killers behind bars” and “We want a homeland, we want change”, according to Agence France-Presse.
From Baghdad today, October 1, 2021 (AFP)
The demonstrators also demanded that the same faces not be elected in the expected elections in about two weeks, which many observers do not believe will bring little change.
Some expressions also carried the slogan “Electing the same faces is a massacre for the homeland”, “No, no to corrupt parties, no to corrupt politicians” and “Do not elect those who killed me.”
This demonstration comes amid a feeling of frustration and despair among activists about the possibility of the early parliamentary elections that will bring any change, especially since the country is still mired in many crises such as electricity cuts, lack of services, deteriorating economic situation and high unemployment among young people, as a result of years of wars and chronic corruption.
Despite this, some people today raised slogans with some optimism, such as “the revolution will spread in the country faster than the Corona virus, and there is no vaccine for it.”
Demonstration in Baghdad (AFP)
It is noteworthy that since the outbreak of popular protests in Iraq in October 2019, more than 70 activists have been assassinated or attempted assassination, while dozens of others have been kidnapped for short periods.
No party has claimed responsibility for the killings and kidnappings of activists, but the demonstrators accuse powerful pro-Iranian factions.