Thousands Gather In Baghdad To Protest U.S. Military Presence

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Thousands Gather In Baghdad To Protest U.S. Military Presence
Large crowds flooded the streets in Baghdad to demand the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.
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Thousands of protesters gathered in Baghdad Friday to demand the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq. 

Photos from the demonstration showed large crowds gathered at a central square in Baghdad. Loudspeakers blasted "No, no America" while protesters held Iraqi flags and signs urging the U.S. to leave the country.

Organizers had hoped to recruit a large number of protesters to attend the event. A powerful Shiite cleric called for a "million-man" march, but the number of demonstrators fell short of that.

The protest came three weeks after an American airstrike killed Iranian Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, sending tensions in the region to a new level.

After the strike, Iraq's parliament approved a resolution calling on the government to dismiss foreign troops from the country. But the measure was non-binding, and the Trump administration has said it isn't planning to pull American troops from the region.

Contains footage from CNN.