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What’s driving anti-government protests in Iraq?

Demonstrators gather at a protest during a curfew, two days after the nationwide anti-government protests turned violent, in Baghdad, Iraq October 3, 2019. REUTERS/Thaier Al-Sudani - RC1AEB580EE0

As anti-government protests in Baghdad and across southern Iraq escalate, Senior Fellow Vanda Felbab-Brown, who was recently in Iraq, provides necessary context for understanding the situation. Felbab-Brown explains the protesters’ demands, the Iraqi government’s response, and the likelihood protests will spread to other regions of the country.

Related material:

Pitfalls of the paramilitary paradigm: The Iraqi state, geopolitics, and Al-Hashd al-Shaabi

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Thanks to audio producer Gaston Reboredo, Chris McKenna, Fred Dews, and Camilo Ramirez for their support.

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