UN proposes road map for Iraq, US call for new elections
At least 319 protesters have been killed by security forces in Iraq since the economically driven protests and unrest began last month, according to the latest figures.
The United Nations mission for Iraq proposed a roadmap in the attempt to calm social protest.
At least 319 protesters have been killed by security forces since the economically driven protests and unrest began last month, according to the latest figures.
On Sunday, the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq urged the country’s politicians to chart a way forward and proposed a roadmap, saying time is of essence.
In a statement it laid out a series of short- and longer-term measures to deal with the crisis, including electoral reform and a series of anti-corruption measures.
As immediate measures, the UN called for the release of all peaceful demonstrators detained since 1 October, initiating a full investigation of cases of abduction and prosecuting and punishing those responsible for the excessive use of force.
Amnesty International said Iraqi authorities should immediately rein in security forces.
“The government of Iraq has a duty to protect its people’s right to life, as well as to gather and express their views. This bloodbath must stop now, and those responsible for it must be brought to justice,” said Heba Morayef, Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa Director.
On the other hand the White House issued a statement Sunday night calling for a halt to the violence against the protesters.
“The United States is seriously concerned by continued attacks against protestors, civic activists, and the media, as well as restrictions on Internet access, in Iraq,” said the statement from the press secretary.
The U.S. called for “the Iraqi government to halt the violence against protesters and fulfill President (Barham) Salih’s promise to pass electoral reform and hold early elections.”
The leaderless protests are targeting Iraq’s entire political class and calling for the overhaul of the sectarian system established after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion. Security forces have used live ammunition, rubber bullets and tear gas in an effort to quell the protests.