The protests in Iraq are moving into a more organized phase. There is now a group called The Coordination Council of the Iraqi Anger Revolution with centers in all the provinces where the protests are happening. They just released to following statement to SSG (translated from Arabic)
Statement released from the Iraqi Revolution coordination command center
Re: continuation of the revolt
Friday, October 4, 2019
To our brave people , you have proven to the world that you are seekers of righteousness and for a noble cause. It is now clear to the world how dysfunctional the Iraqi Government is and how it’s trying to marginalize, insult and deny the demands of the Iraqi people through statements from PM Adil Abdul Mahdi, through the treasonous Marjaaiya and through the corrupt political parties that are controlled by Iran.
The people now know that we were correct in all our warnings and assessments reports that we have been disseminating from 2003 till today.
We have issued a directive to our people not to participate at the Tahrir Square gathering on Friday October 5th that is called upon by Moqtada Sadr , who is known historically for betraying the Iraqi people.
He has now decided not to show up personally at the Tahrir Square as he is busy negotiating a deal with the Iraqi Government for more benefits and power.
Let it be known that we will continue the revolution in all areas of Baghdad and the Iraqi provinces.
Iran has placed tens of snipers around the main areas of protest to kill our people in cold blood.
We have asked our people to spread out all over Baghdad in order to weaken the agents of Iran.
We have not negotiated with the Iraqi Government and we have not appointed a negotiator on behalf of the revolution. This will continue to be our strategy and agenda which is a major upset and a source of panic by all Iraqs enemies that only want to negotiate to stop the revolt and to deny Iraqis a better life.
To our great youth we ask you to continue your courageous revolution until this corrupt and dysfunctional government is removed !!
Long live the Iraqi People !!!
Long live Iraq 🇮🇶
While some of the original protests were focused on government corruption and economic issues, the issue of Iranian influence and control has been deeply embedded in all of them. That seems to be the unifying factor as the Iraqi government is seen as increasingly compromised by Iran. In addition the presence of Iranian controlled Hashd al-Shaabi militias involved in killing protesters and suppressing the protests is seen as a violation of Iraqi sovereignty.
The Parliament has already been weakened as Moqtada al Sadr, leader of the largest single bloc, told his members to boycott until the government makes changes. But as the statement notes, the protesters see this as merely a play for him to gain more power from the government.
Iraq’s top cleric has also spoken out against the government
“Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, blamed lawmakers for failing to enact reforms and eradicate corruption.”
Things in Iraq are at a tipping point. There are reports that Iran is sending more IRGC troops to support the Iraqi government and help control the protests. That could push this into open conflict as it would be seen as Iran taking control of Iraq as a vassal state. This requires some clear leadership from the US to make sure Iran doesn’t end up solidifying their control.Statement