Iraq: Protest Clash leaves 31 Dead

Iraq: Protest Clash leaves 31 Dead

Heavy guynfire rang out in Baghdad, capital of Iraq even as an embattled Prime Minister Adel Abdel Mahdi addressed the people ina a televised speech. The climate over Iraq is grim as thousands of people took to the streets to protest and clashed with the riot police. The riots left at least 31 people dead.

The crowds defied curfews, tear gas as truckfuls of them gathered to pour out their anger over corruption, unemployment and poor services. Instead of directly responding to the refrains of the public, the leader chose to defend his govnment's achievements and pledged a monthly stipend for families in need. He also asked for time to implement a reform agenda he had promised them last year.

Crowds swelled around the office of the Ministry for oil and industry, as protesters threatened to march to the capital's emblematic Tahrir Square.Most demonstrators carried the Iraq flag while others held banners with the name of Hussein, a revered figure in Shiite Islam. The protests are mainly through the Shiite South cities.