Baghdad: An attack on protesters in Baghdad (Baghdad,) killed 23 people and injured a large number of people. This has been revealed in the latest official figures. However, despite the attack, people continued the anti-government protests on Saturday. A source in Iraq's Ministry of Internal Affairs told news agency Effe that unidentified assailants opened fire on demonstrators on al-Khalani Square on Friday, injuring 135 as well.
The attackers entered a convoy of vehicles in the area and started indiscriminate firing on the people gathered for the demonstration there. Al-Khalani is next to a multi-story parking garage, which has been occupied by protesters since the current mobilization that began two months ago.
It is also close to Tahrir Square, which has been the center of the movement that led to Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi to resign earlier. Despite these attacks, the protesters have not been freshly defeated and they continued to protest at al-Khalani Square and Tahrir Square demanding reforms.
Iraqi President Barham Salih condemned 'armed criminal attacks of criminal gangs', although he did not name. He emphasized the right of any citizen to protest and protest peacefully without armed and violent attitude.
The UN Secretary-General's Special Representative for Iraq, Jeanine Henis-Plaschart, also condemned the attack. "The deliberate killing of unarmed protesters by armed people is nothing short of atrocities against the people of Iraq," he said in a statement. "The culprits should be identified and brought to justice without delay," he said.
Thousands of people called on Tahrir Square on Friday to make it clear that their demands were beyond replacing one Prime Minister with another. More than 400 have been killed and thousands injured since the protests began on 1 October.