- Title: Baghdad: U.S. embassy guards combat protesters, militia with stun grenades
- Date: 31st December 2019
- Summary: BAGHDAD, IRAQ (DECEMBER 31, 2019) (REUTERS) STUN GRENADES EXPLODING CLOSE TO PROTESTERS AND MILITIA NEXT TO U.S. EMBASSY COMPOUND WALLS CROWD OF PROTESTERS AND MILITIA PROTESTERS AND MILITIA TRYING TO LAY OBJECT OVER BARBED WIRE ON WALL STUN GRENADES EXPLODING CLOSE TO PROTESTERS AND MILITIA U.S. EMBASSY COMPOUND SECURITY WATCHING ON FROM BEHIND WALLS VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS AND MILITIA STUN GRENADES EXPLODING CLOSE TO PROTESTERS AND MILITIA
- Embargoed: 14th January 2020 14:19
- Keywords: Baghdad Iraq Kataib Hezbollah Protests U.S. air strikes U.S. embassy anti-U.S. protests
- Location: BAGHDAD, IRAQ
- City: BAGHDAD, IRAQ
- Country: Iraq
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace
- Reuters ID: LVA001BCB3613
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: QUALITY AS INCOMING
Protesters and militia fighters enraged by U.S. air strikes on Iraq staged a violent demonstration outside the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad on Tuesday (December 31), torching a security post and hurling stones as security forces and embassy guards hit back with stun grenades and tear gas.
Iraqi officials said the ambassador and other staff had been evacuated but this could not be confirmed with American officials.
In Washington, U.S. President Donald Trump accused Iran of orchestrating the violence and said Tehran would be held responsible.
The protesters and militiamen stormed and burned a security post at the entrance of the U.S. Embassy but did not breach the main compound, Reuters witnesses said.
They threw stones at the gate while others chanted, "No, no, America! No, no, Trump!"
U.S. planes on Sunday (December 29) had attacked bases belonging to an Iranian-backed militia - an action that risks drawing Iraq further into a proxy conflict between Washington and Tehran at a time when mass protests are challenging Iraq's political system.
(Production: Maher Nazeh, George Sargent)
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