Death toll climbs to at least 27 in Iraq on day-3 of protests- police, medics

UNTV News   •   October 4, 2019   •   792

Iraqis protest in east Baghdad, Iraq, 03 October 2019. According to local media reports at least 27 people have died since protests erupted two days earlier. Despite an unlimited curfew that was declared in Baghdad on 03 October from 5 am, the protesters went out again and shouted slogans against the government demanding better services and jobs. EPA-EFE/MURTAJA LATEEF

 Iraqi security forces opened fire on thousands of demonstrators who defied a curfew in Baghdad on Thursday (October 3) and exchanged fire with gunmen in a southern city, killing two people on the third day of nationwide anti-government protests.

The protests, in which at least 27 have now been killed and over 600 wounded, began over unemployment and poor services but have escalated into calls for a change of government and pose one of the worst security challenges in years.

They appear to be independent of any political party and seemingly took the security forces by surprise.

At least 4,000 protesters gathered in Baghdad’s Tayaran Square and attempted to march onto the central Tahrir Square only to be met with open fire and heavy tear gas.

Police used live ammunition in the Zaafaraniya district of Baghdad, where a protester was shot dead, and there were protests in the northwestern Shula district.

Police said protesters had fired at them in the town of Rifaen near the southern city of Nassiriya where seven people were killed overnight and one more was killed on Thursday.

Fifty people were wounded in Rifae, including five police, they said. (REUTERS)

(Production: Maher Nazeh, Mostafa Salem)

DFA lowers alert level in Iraq as security situation improves

Robie de Guzman   •   November 2, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Tuesday announced it has lowered the alert level for the whole of Iraq amid improving security situation in the said country.

In a statement, the DFA said the alert level for Iraq has been downgraded from Alert Level 4 to Alert Level 3 due to some improvements in the security situation in the country and as requested by the overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Iraq.

Alert Level 4 means mandatory repatriation while Alert Level 3 means voluntary repatriation.

“Following this development and upon the recommendation of the DFA, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) Governing Board has issued Governing Board Resolution (GBR) No. 9 series of 2021, exempting returning OFWs to Iraq from the deployment ban, subject to specific conditions listed in the said resolution,” the DFA said.

The department reminded Filipinos in Iraq to continue to exercise caution, restrict movements only to those that are necessary, and keep their communication lines open with the Philippine Embassy in Baghdad.

The embassy may be reached through +9647506561740, +9647516167838, and +9647508105240, or baghdad.pe@dfa.gov.ph.

 

At least 8 killed in Myanmar during protest against military coup

Aileen Cerrudo   •   May 3, 2021

At least eight people were killed during another protest against the military coup in Myanmar, a news agency reported.

Myanmar Now, an independent news service, reported that the junta’s security forces shot and killed at least eight people during some protests on Sunday (May 2).

Communities in Myanmar launched coordinated demonstrations which organizers called “the global Myanmar spring revolution.”

The armed forces of the military have arrested and fired rubber bullets, live ammunition, and grenades at civilians in order to stop the said protests.

One person was killed and at least 20 were injured in the jade-rich town of Hpakant, Kachin State. Three people were killed in the central town of Wetlet.  Meanwhile, two were killed in different towns in Shan State.

It was three months since the military took over the authority from the elected government. Thousands of residents have already been displaced and thousands were killed, according to an estimate of the United Nations. -AAC

PH Embassy launches ID program for OFWs in Iraq

Marje Pelayo   •   April 19, 2021

The Philippine Embassy in Baghdad has launched an ID program for Filipinos in the Gulf country as part of its advocacy to document all Filipino nationals there.

This project will provide a sense of security and an alternate mode of identification among overseas Filipinos especially in critical situations where some employers opt to confiscate passports under the Kafala system.

The new measure is in coordination with the Department of Foreign Affairs – Office of the Undersecretary for Civilian Security and Consular Affairs (OUCSCA).

All Filipinos in Iraq are encouraged to register for an ID at shorturl.at/nMoS1 or send an email to baghdad.pe@dfa.gov.ph for other queries.

Khafala system is an employment policy among Gulf States which requires sponsorship from a national in order for migrant workers to be employed and be allowed to reside in the country.

The sponsor can be either an individual or a company is given substantial control over the worker which most of the time they confiscate the worker’s passports and other travel documents, or their cellular phones.

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