authorities 'using violence and bribes' to curb dissent Iraq
Protesters say Maliki is using special security forces to shut down demonstrationWashington Post adds (March 4th): Witnesses in Baghdad and as far north as Kirkuk described watching last week as security forces in black uniforms, tracksuits and T-shirts roared up in trucks and Humvees, attacked protesters, rounded up others from cafes and homes and hauled them off, blindfolded, to army detention centers.
Entire neighborhoods - primarily Sunni areas where residents are generally opposed to Maliki - were blockaded to prevent residents from joining the demonstrations. Journalists were beaten.
Al Jazeera's Jane Arraf reported from
Concrete blocks were set up by authorities on all of