One killed in protests in Iraq’s Kirkuk: Official

At least one civilian was killed and eight other people were injured Saturday when clashes erupted during protests in the multi-ethnic northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, a local official said.

The identity and the circumstances surrounding the death were not immediately clear, the director of the local health authority Ziad Khalaf told AFP, adding that those injured had been hit by bullets, stones or glass.

He said a member of the security forces was among the injured.

Kirkuk police spokesperson Amer Shuani told regional broadcaster Kurdistan 24 that the toll was “one dead and five injured.”

A curfew had been instated and police had been deployed to act as a buffer and keep apart rival protests — Kurdish residents on one side and Turkmen and Arabs on the other.

Warning shots were fired to force Kurdish demonstrators to disperse. An AFP correspondent said vehicles on a main avenue were set on fire.

Tensions have been brewing for nearly a week in Kirkuk, which is disputed between the federal government in Baghdad and the authorities in the autonomous Kurdistan region in the north.

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