Top two Iraqi political groups call for PM Abadi to resign

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi speaks during the first session of the new Iraqi parliament in Baghdad.

:: The Sairoon alliance led by Iraqi Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr has released a statement calling for the resignation of Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi as ongoing protests continue to grip the city of Basra.

For his part, Iraqi MP Ahmed al-Assadi, spokesperson of al-Fath alliance headed by Hadi al-Amiri (head of the Badr Organization) and affiliated to the Popular Mobilization forces, said that the parliament members unanimously agreed that the government failed in dealing with Basra crisis, calling for “the resignation of the prime minister Haidar al-Abadi immediately.”

The statement came on Saturday when Basra airport was targeted by rocket fire on Saturday after another night of protests against Iraq’s political elite during which demonstrators torched the Iranian consulate and briefly took oilfield workers hostage.

Basra’s streets were quiet and emptying out as officials re-imposed the curfew starting at 4 p.m. local time (1300 GMT). Organizers of the demonstrations said they would pause protests on Saturday following the previous evening’s escalation.

Iraqi protesters burn the Iranian Consulate in Basra, Iraq September 7, 2018.

Airport workers are seen at Basra airport after it was targeted by rocket fire in Basra.

Iraqi protesters shout slogans during an anti-government protest near the burnt building of the government office in Basra.

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