A total of 23 protesters and security forces members have been killed and more than 1,077 injured amid ongoing demonstrations in Baghdad and southern provinces of Iraq from Nov. 3 to 7, the Iraqi High Commission for Human Rights said Friday, Trend reports citing Xinhua.
As monitoring the ongoing demonstrations in Baghdad and a number of provinces through its teams, the commission noted that the security forces continued to use live bullets, tear gas and sound bombs to disperse protesters.
The commission called on security forces to take more humane means in dealing with protesters.
Iraq's top Shiite cleric Ali al-Sistani said on Friday that Iraqi government has a unique opportunity to respond to demonstrators' demands, while warning of internal and external parties to exploit the demonstrations to achieve their goals.
The cleric urged security forces to avoid using violence, especially excessive violence in response with peaceful protesters.