A peaceful protest in northern Iraq against the local government of Iraqi Kurdistan President Masud Barzani has ended in violence with 4 dead and over 50 injured.
The protest began in Sulaimanieh on Thursday afternoon, Press TV correspondent reported on Thursday.
As thousands gathered, cries of "freedom," "change" and "go Barzani" rang through the city streets, rejecting the policies of the Kurdistan regional government.
Crowds held up bread, signs reading "game over" and “go before it is too late” and pictures of Mubarak fleeing amid a hail of shoes.
The peaceful protest began to turn violent as the main crowd reached the headquarters of the Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP), headed by Masud Barzani.
Breaking the sidewalk apart, protesters began pelting soldiers guarding the building with concrete blocks, breaking windows and destroying fences nearby. When the crowd began ramming the gates of the KDP headquarters, soldiers opened fire.
The spokesman for the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan Azad Jandiani told Press TV that he did not believe Sulaimanieh would see a repeat of the protests in Egypt.
However, the Kurdish protesters complained of what they described as widespread corruption, unemployment and lack of basic services.
Shots have continued to ring out through the evening, and although police, KDP soldiers and an anti-terror squad have moved in to guard the area, the crowds have continue to chant and throw stones from the sidelines.
Similar protests also took place in the regions capital Erbil.