Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kazemi has a stability problem.
Catapulted to power this year amid an outcry over the predecessor government’s mass killing of street protestors agitating against corruption, unemployment and poor state services, Kazemi now faces his own crisis as the nation teeters precariously on the edge of financial and economic collapse.
A former journalist and Saddam Hussein-era exile who returned to Iraq after America’s 2003 invasion and occupation, Kazemi’s political career was fast-tracked when he was appointed to administer the country’s intelligence services in 2016.
Iraq's Prime Minister Mustafa Al Kadhimi ordered disciplinary action against the chief of a security force whose members were caught taunting a teenager whose chest was covered in bruises in an online video.
The video showed three members of the Interior Ministry’s Law Preservation Forces, which was set up to handle protests, standing around a boy in his underwear on a chair.
They cursed his mother and threatened the teenager with sexual assault as one of them cut the boy's hair with a blade.
Local media said the teenager was one of dozens of civilians detained for joining anti-government protests.
Another video showed the youth receiving treatment at a makeshift clinic typical of those set up by demonstrators who have been on the streets since October, demanding political change.
“One of them grabbed me by the throat and took me,” the youth said.