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Protesters Storm Palace After Powerful Iraqi Cleric Quits, Multiple Deaths Reported
(Daily Caller) Protesters stormed the palace in Baghdad after populist leader Muqtada al-Sadr announced his resignation from politics, sparking mass demonstrations that have resulted in at least two casualties, according to Reuters and state media.
The powerful Shiite cleric said Monday that inability to form a coalition government with pro-Iran factions compelled him to permanently withdraw from politics and close his offices, state-run Iraqi News Agency reported. Interim Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi indefinitely suspended cabinet meetings after the demonstrators occupied the palace, as Iraqi security forces killed two protesters and wounded at least 19 others in clashes between Sadr’s supporters and Iran-backed groups around Iraq’s Green Zone, Reuters reported…
…Iraq has operated with no official government, new prime minister or new president since Sadr failed to obtain a sufficient majority with Kurdish and Sunni Arab parties in October elections to avoid forming a coalition government with Iran-backed factions…
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