Four killed as violent clashes move to Iraq's southern Basra
During the country's most recent outbreak of violence, four people were killed during the fighting between political factions in the southern Iraqi city of Basra.
Four people were killed in fighting between political factions in the southern Iraqi city of Basra overnight and Thursday morning, Reuters reported citing local security officials.
It was the country's most recent outbreak of violence, which pitted supporters of Muqtada Al-Sadr against rival political parties.
The clashes occurred in the heart of Basra, Iraq's largest oil-producing city. Security sources claim that two of those killed were members of Al-Sadr's Peace Brigades personnel.
Armed Al-Sadr supporters clashed with police and members of other political factions in Baghdad this week, in the country's largest street violence in years.
Iraq has been without a government since an election in October due to an intractable political impasse between the rival parties. It has also increased Iraq's dysfunction and volatility as the country recovers from decades of war instigated by the US occupation, sanctions, civil unrest, and massive corruption.
A few days ago, the supporters of the Sadrist movement in Iraq stormed the government palace, and the riot police were trying to get the situation under control, Al Mayadeen's correspondent in Baghdad reported.
"The supporters of the Sadrist movement are moving toward the Sanak and the Republic bridges in central Baghdad," Al Mayadeen's correspondent said noting that the riot police were calling for reinforcements to the Green Zone.
Hundreds of the Sadrist movement's followers broke into Baghdad’s green zone shortly after the movement's leader, Muqtada Al-Sadr, announced his retirement from politics.
An AFP correspondent reported that the protesters broke into the meeting rooms in the governmental buildings, and some of them carried the Iraqi flag while others swam in the Republican Palace's swimming pool.