Various masked gunmen ransacked the office of multiple television stations situated in Baghdad, on Saturday. According to reports published by a global media agency, the Saudi-owned Al-Arabiya confirmed that armed men wearing black masks attacked their office.
Sources reported that many colleagues have been injured during the storming of the office by gunmen. An eyewitness reported that the gunmen wore black clothes and smashed the office equipment and mobile phones of the employees. The source also reported that the local police declined protection to the station during the attack.
An employee informed the Members of the federal police declined to assist them during the attack, following to which, they received assurances from the Prime Minister's Office and from officials to investigate the attack. The offices of Dijla, NRT, Arabiya Hadath, Fallouja, Alghad Alaraby, Al-Sharqiya, and Sky News Arabia were also reportedly targeted. This attack comes as Iraq has been hit by protests which marked the largest to date against Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi's fragile government.
Approximately 100 people have been killed and thousands suffered injuries during the Anti-government protests. Protests have been reported in the cities of Nasiriyah, Diwaniyah, and Basra. Many of the protesters in Baghdad held photographs of one of the country's most famous war heroes, Lt Gen Abdulwahab al-Saadi, a former head of Iraq's counterterrorism force who led the fight to defeat the Islamic State.
Iran has been in a state of unrest due to violence since Tuesday, as anti-government protests started raging across the nation. Security forces have fired live ammunition and tear gas in a desperate attempt to suppress them. The death toll from mass protests in Baghdad and cities across southern Iraq rose to almost 100 on Saturday as the unrest entered its fifth day, the Iraqi parliament's human rights commission said. More than 4,000 people have been seriously injured due to the recent protests, mostly against chronic unemployment, poor public services, and widespread corruption. Reportedly, a total of 540 demonstrators have been arrested, of whom nearly 200 remain in custody.