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Three killed as Iraq protesters attack Iran consulate in Karbala

At least three Iraqi protesters have been killed during an attack on the Iranian consulate in the Shia holy city of Karbala, according to security sources and a monitor.

Demonstrators reportedly scaled the concrete barriers surrounding the building late on Sunday. They hung Iraqi flags and spray-painted "Karbala is free, Iran out, out!" on them, in a sign of increasing anger among some demonstrators against Tehran's perceived interference in Iraqi politics.


The demonstrations are rooted in long-standing grievances over poor governance, official corruption and lack of economic opportunity, but have since expanded into demands for sweeping changes and an overhaul of the country's political system, which was established after a US-led invasion in 2003.

The demonstrators have directed their ire at a class of elite leaders whom they accuse of pillaging the oil-rich country's wealth while the population grows poorer.

Protesters have also directed their rage at neighbouring Iran and the powerful Iraqi Shia militias tied to it.


The US and Iran enjoy significant political and military influence in Iraq, and protesters have accused the political elite of being subservient to one or the other without concern for the needs of ordinary people.