While many are fleeing tear gas smoke and horrific sound bombs fired by security forces to disperse protesters in Baghdad, dozens of small vehicles, locally called "tuk-tuk", are struggling hard in the opposite direction.
Tuk-tuks help those who are stranded in chaos, taking them to a safe place or a nearby hospital for treatment if they are injured, or to refrigerators (refrigerators for keeping dead bodies).
This scene has become a prominent feature in the popular protests in the squares of Baghdad, especially Tahrir Square, a stronghold of protesters against the government of Adel Abdul Mahdi, since the demonstrations began earlier this month demanding employment and improving services and fighting corruption before they evolve to the demand to overthrow the government.
The tuk-tuk entry into the protest site is spontaneous, when government ambulances are unable to reach the protest sites. Protesters are increasingly relying on these vehicles, as security forces suppress protests using tear gas, water cannons, sound bombs, live bullets and rubber bullets.
Day after day, the tuk-tuk became one of the most prominent icons of the Iraqi protests against corruption and sectarian quotas.
Most Tok Tok owners are only 25 years old, and this means their only daily source of income, but this has not prevented them from volunteering to transport the injured during the protests, says 20-year-old Abu Ali.
"We don't get paid for what we are doing in the demonstrations, and we are mobilizing all our efforts to transport the wounded and suffocated, and we are also delivering food to the trapped. Demonstrators have tried to raise money for us, but we refused.
"We have about 500 volunteers from Tok Tok," Abu Ali said. "We are periodically involved in providing support and assistance when the demonstrators are subjected to intense gas and live bullets." Security because of our position. "
Like the demonstrators, the owners of these small vehicles had a share of injuries and damages during the ambulance and transport, including Hassan al-Husseini, who lay in the gardens of Tahrir Square suffering from deep wounds in the chest due to heavy rubber bullets.
The Tuk Tuk Revolution
"I took a lot of wounded in my car, and the last time I got a lot of rubber bullets, after carrying seven wounded protesters, one by one, to the hospital," said Husseini, 17.
"I will stay here. I am not going home," he said. "I am here for my martyr brother who lost in the war against ISIS, where he fought to death and then took his blood from corrupt political thieves."
One of the protesters wrote on his Facebook page, `` The tank let us down and the tuk-tuk saved us, '' and another Twitter tweet, `` I used to see you with a small eye, and you proved that you look at Iraq with a big eye. ''
Tuk-tuk drivers, you entered history by taking the wounded and injured to hospitals.
A student teased the owners of these vehicles by posting a banner on her Facebook page that read "I will not marry but the owner of Tok Tok," and Iraqi singer Hossam al-Rassam sing a special song in which he sings tuk tuk and his companions.
Activists traded pictures of the arrival of the head of the United Nations Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) on Wednesday in Tahrir Square in central Baghdad, where she appeared sitting inside Tuk Tuk, then exchanged conversations with protesters, in a symbolic act to indicate the importance of the humanitarian role of the owners of these vehicles.