Populist Iraqi cleric Moqtaqa al-Sadr on Sunday called off demonstrations against the U.S. embassy “to avoid internal strife”, his office said.
Sadr had earlier called for the demonstrations to take place in Baghdad and other cities.
Sadr's initial call followed a large march on Friday in which tens of thousands protested against the US military presence in Iraq.
Protesters on Sunday threw petrol bombs and stones at security forces which responded by firing tear gas canisters and live rounds into the air.
The authorities’ latest attempt to push back protesters and restore order came after Sadr, who enjoys huge support in Baghdad and the south, said on Saturday he would end his involvement in anti-government unrest.