TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – Air traffic resumed at the airport in the Iraqi city of Najaf after protesters withdrew, state television reported late Friday.

Earlier in the day, hundreds of Iraqis stormed the airport and halted air traffic in the holy city, extending protests following demonstrations in the southern city of Basra decrying poor government services and corruption, Reuters reported.

No further details were immediately available. 

Local communities and tribes in Iraq, where foreign oil companies are developing the OPEC nation’s vast energy reserves, periodically protest to urge companies to provide jobs and other benefits.

Stability in Basra, the main southern city at the edge of the Persian Gulf, is of vital importance as a hub for oil exports accounting for over 95 percent of government revenues.