Protesters led by women marched in Baghdad, Nasriyah, and other cities in Iraq on Saturday last week. They were angry at attacks on them by state security forces and leading politicians.
The march was part of an ongoing anti-corruption movement that erupted last October and forced the resignation of former prime minister Adel Abdul Mahdi.
It was organised after the cleric Moqtada al-Sadr used women’s participation in the movement in an attempt to discredit it as pro-West.
Sadr has led resistance movements against the US following the invasion of Iraq in 2003. He has a mass following, particularly among the poor.
He previously supported the movement, but also has a stake in the Iraqi government, and recently turned against the protests.
One protester in Baghdad said, “These marches are a response to everyone who questioned the woman’s voice.
“We are continuing until the end.”