- Title: Protesters vow to continue demonstrating in front of U.S. embassy
- Date: 1st January 2020
- Summary: U.S. EMBASSY SECURITY PERSONNEL WATCHING PROTESTERS FROM ROOF (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) PROTESTER WHO DID NOT WISH TO BE NAMED, SAYING: ''We are here holding a sit-in for the souls of our martyrs and until the departure of the American occupiers, who committed the aggression at our borders against our army and sacred Hashd (paramilitary forces).''
- Embargoed: 15th January 2020 08:18
- Keywords: Baghdad Iraq U.S. air strikes on Iraq protests outside U.S. embassy sit-in outside embassy
- Location: BAGHDAD, IRAQ
- City: BAGHDAD, IRAQ
- Country: Iraq
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Editors' Choice
- Reuters ID: LVA003BUCBVIF
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Protesters and Iranian-backed militia set up tents and vowed to continue demonstrating in front of the U.S. embassy in Baghdad on Wednesday (January 1).
Angry about U.S. air strikes on Iraq, militiamen and their supporters hurled stones and torched a security post at the embassy on Tuesday (December 31), in an unprecedented attack on an American diplomatic mission in the country.
The U.S. State Department said diplomatic personnel inside the embassy were safe and there were no plans to evacuate them.
Embassy guards used stun grenades and tear gas to repel protesters, who stormed and burned the security post at the entrance but did not breach the main compound
U.S. President Donald Trump blamed Iran for "orchestrating" the attack on the U.S. embassy in Baghdad and said he would hold Tehran responsible.
The Pentagon said that in addition to Marines sent to protect embassy personnel, about 750 soldiers from the 82nd Airborne Division were being sent to the Middle East and that additional troops were prepared to deploy over the next several days.
U.S. air strikes were carried out on Sunday (December 29) on bases operated by the Iranian-backed militia Kataib Hezbollah inside Iraq, which killed at least 25 fighters and wounded 55. The strikes were retaliation for the killing of a U.S. civilian contractor in a rocket attack on an Iraqi military base.
(Production: Maher Nazeh, Mohammed Katfan, Tanya Lezaic)
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