A southern Iraqi governor was replaced late Friday after five days of demonstrations demanding he step down, local media reported. 

Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi appointed Abdul Ghani al-Asadi, head of the Iraqi National Security Service, to replace Nazim al-Waili as governor or Dhi Qar, Iraq’s official news agency reported.

The move came after at least three protestors were killed and nearly 100 were wounded Friday in clashes between security forces and demonstrators in Nasiriyah province, the capital of Dhi Qar.

Hospitals in the city were reportedly filled with injured people.

Interior Minister Othman al-Ghanmi and al-Asadi visited Nasiriyah on Thursday amid the protests.

Anti-government demonstrations that began in October 2019 to protest unemployment, corruption, and a lack of public service in Iraq soon spread to the country’s southern provinces.  

*Writing by Zehra Nur Duz

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