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More protests by pro-Iran groups over election results in Iraq

More protests by pro-Iran groups over election results in Iraq
posted onNovember 14, 2021

Supporters of Iran-backed Hashd al-Shaabi (PMF), on Friday resumed their protests over the results of Iraq's parliamentary elections, which they claim was fraudulent, AFP reports.

According to AFP, around 2,000 Hashd supporters gathered near one of the entrances to Baghdad's Green Zone on Friday, chanting "death to America" and slogans against Iraq's Prime Minister Mustafa al-Khadimi, whom they accuse of complicity in the alleged election fraud.

Numerous protests have erupted since the announcement of the results of Iraq's October 10 parliamentary elections, in which pro-Iranian regime parties emerged as the biggest losers.

The Fatah (Conquest) Alliance, which is the political arm of the Iran-backed PMF, lost over two-thirds of its parliamentary seats, dropping from 48 to 15 seats—a major defeat.

The pro-Iran Shiite groups in Iraq have rejected the outcome of the vote and claimed election fraud. Their supporters have set up camps near the entrance to Baghdad's sensitive diplomatic Green Zone in an ongoing sit-in, to pressurize the central government with the threat of violence.

Iraq's prime minister was recently the target of a failed unclaimed assassination attempt, which the Iraqi officials blame on Iran-backed militia(s). Mustafa al-Kadhimi escaped unhurt when his residence in Baghdad's Green Zone was attacked by explosive-laden drones on Sunday.

This had come two days after the violent clashes that occurred between security forces and pro-Iran militia supporters attempting to storm Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone, which resulted in the injury of dozens and the death of at least one protester.

The biggest winner in Iraq's parliamentary elections has been the movement of Muqtada al-Sadr, a Shiite Muslim cleric critical of Iran, winning 73 of the assembly’s 329 seats.

Iraq's electoral commission has said that a manual recount of votes in polling stations where complaints had been filed did not show any "fraud". Final results are expected to be released soon.