2 Protesters Dead in Iraq Violence

2 Protesters Dead in Iraq Violence

BAGHDAD (AP) -- Iraqi officials say two protesters have been shot dead and at least 26 wounded in Baghdad and southern Iraq in continued unrest after Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi announced he intended to resign.

Iraq's Cabinet said in a statement it convened an emergency session Saturday to discuss Abdul-Mahdi's stepping down and approved the resignations of key staff. Experts said parliament must approve Abdul Mahdi's resignation for it to be valid.

Security and hospital officials say two protesters were killed and 15 wounded early Saturday by security forces who fired live rounds at them in the holy city of Najaf, in southern Iraq.

The officials said at least 11 protesters were wounded near Baghdad's Ahrar Bridge when security forces fired live ammunition and tear gas to disperse demonstrators.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity in line with regulations.