Selin ATAY-TDO-Iraq is declaring a curfew in Baghdad starting early on Thursday until further notice, Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi announced late on Wednesday, after two days of nationwide anti-government protests turned violent.

“Statement from the commander-in-chief of the armed forces: all vehicles and individuals are totally forbidden to move in Baghdad as of 5 am today, Thursday, and until further notice,” Abdul Mahdi said in a statement.

Travelers to and from Baghdad airport, ambulances, government employees in hospitals, electricity, and water departments, and religious pilgrims are exempt from the curfew, the statement said.

Curfews were imposed in Nassiriya, Amara and Hilla as protests that began on Tuesday over unemployment, corruption and poor public services escalated.

In Iraq, 12 people have been killed in anti-government demonstrations since October 1.

Meanwhile, Brigadier General November Rizai, Commander of the Iranian border guard, said that the Khosrawi border crossing in Kermanshah province and the Cezzabe border crossing in Khuzestan province were closed as of last night due to protests in Iraq.  Rizai stated that the border crossings would be reopened after the events in Iraq stopped and security was maintained.

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