40 Iraqi protesters slain in 24 hours as violence spirals

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SAMYA KULLAB and MURTADA FARAJ Associated Press BAGHDAD (AP) — Security forces shot dead 40 anti-government protesters during 24 hours of bloodshed amid spiraling violence in the capital and Iraq's south, security and medical officials said Thursday, one day after an Iranian consulate was torched. Iran condemned the burning of its consulate in the holy city of Najaf as violence continued into the night across southern Iraq, where security forces had killed 36 protesters and wounded 245 since Wednesday evening, the officials said. Another four protesters were shot dead in the capital. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity in line with regulations. Police and military forces were deployed across key oil-rich provinces to re-open roads closed off by demonstrations. The escalat
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