Iraq promises new jobs to protesters as roads reopen
A member of the Iraqi security forces watches over protesters as they demonstrate in support of Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's reforms. (AFP/Haidar Mohammed Ali)
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In response to protests demanding reform in the Iraqi government, authorities Sunday promised new jobs and ended two days of demonstrations, Reuters reported.
Anmar al-Safi, state-run General Company for Ports of Iraq spokesman, said negotiations between the company director and security officials led to the promise to create up to 75 new jobs. Protesters who were blocking the Umm Qasr commodities port opened the roads in southern Iraq.
Thousands of Iraqis have been protesting in the streets in a call for better government services, more available jobs and reforms in the governing bodies. Dozens of them set up tents in the entrances of the Umm Qasr port, refusing to allow trucks carrying goods and employees to pass, according to Reuters.
Umm Qasr is essential to the oil-producing city of Basr and receives grain and heavy equipment.
Demonstrations in Iraq have led to major reforms by Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, who announced the dissolving of two top positions in the government and significant spending cuts. The protests began last month in response to power cuts during the country's heat waves.
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