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Iraqi Sunni Leader Blames Factions with Agendas for Sectarian Violence - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Cairo, Asharq Al-Awsat- Sheikh Harith al-Dari, the chairman of the (Sunni) Association of Muslim Scholars in Iraq, has rejected the accusations that some government parties have made against what he called the “resistance.” On his recent visit to Cairo, Al-Dari told Asharq al-Awsat that he is against narrowing down the resistance to only Al-Zarqawi and Saddam’s supporters. He described the situation in his country as a state of sectarian violence rather than a civil war. He said that some radical groups fostered by certain parties, which have armed militias and special interests and agendas that have nothing to do with the homeland’s interests, are behind these acts of violence. He added that some political groups are trying to exploit the sectarian issue to achieve their own interests. He accused these groups of being behind the criminal acts that certain parties are committing.

Al-Dari said that the resistance targets only the occupation and its aides. He said that there are multiple sources of terrorism, including the occupation, the government, and some armed militia. He stressed his rejection of terrorist acts that target innocent people from the sons of this homeland. He said that unfortunately, Iraqis are now being targeted by several international and local parties.

The chairman of the Association of Muslim Scholars said that the occupation is the main problem in Iraq and that an end to the occupation and the withdrawal of the coalition forces will represent the beginning of the restoration of stability in Iraq. He accused the occupation troops of committing criminal actions and accused some Iraqi parties of seeking to confuse terrorism with resistance and of promoting this state of confusion to serve their own interests. He added that these people have even put their personal interests above the homeland’s interest. Al-Dari pointed out that some Iraqis have been duped and stressed that the occupation has brought all-out evil into Iraq, thus shifting the situation of Iraqis from bad to worse.

Concerning the demands that the Sunnis have placed on the next Iraqi Government, Al-Dari said: “(Joining) the government is completely out of the question for us. This is because we expect it to do well. In my opinion, forming a purely Sunni, purely Shiite, or purely Kurdish government will add nothing new to the situation.”

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

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