Populist cleric al-Sadr joins protesters in Iraq’s Najaf: Source

Moqtada al-Sadr (R) drives a car as he joins anti-government protests in the central holy city of Najaf on October 29, 2019. (AFP)

Populist Iraqi cleric Moqtada al-Sadr joined thousands of anti-government demonstrators on Tuesday in the holy city of Najaf, an AFP correspondent said.

Al-Sadr, who has backed the protests, was spotted shortly after airport sources told AFP the militiaman-turned-leader had landed in his native Najaf from Iran.

On Monday, al-Sadr called on Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul Mahdi to announce early parliamentary elections overseen by the United Nations and without the participation of existing political parties.

Al-Sadr’s bloc, Saeroon, which came first in a 2018 election and helped bring Abdul Mahdi’s fragile coalition government to power, said on Saturday it was going into opposition until the demands of anti-government protesters were met.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:53 - GMT 06:53