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Protester killed in Baghdad, dozens wounded across Iraq

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BAGHDAD: A protester was shot dead Tuesday in the Iraqi capital and dozens more were wounded across the country’s south, where burning tyres blocked highways and thick black smoke blanketed its restive cities.  The casualties in clashes with security forces were the latest episode of violence in the nearly two-month-old grassroots movement demanding the total overhaul of Iraq’s political class.  At least 350 people have been killed and around 15,000 wounded since the protests broke out on October 1 in Baghdad and the Shiite-majority south.
The latest victim fell in Baghdad, shot by a rubber bullet near Al-Ahrar bridge, which leads to a cluster of government buildings on the west bank of the river Tigris.
Fearing protesters would cross it to storm those offices, security forces have sealed off Al-Ahrar and used volleys of tear gas, rubber bullets and live fire to keep crowds back.  Demonstrators — most of them teenagers — throw rocks from behind their own makeshift barricades in daily skirmishes that have transformed the historic heart of Baghdad into a flashpoint.

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