<body><script type="text/javascript"> function setAttributeOnload(object, attribute, val) { if(window.addEventListener) { window.addEventListener('load', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }, false); } else { window.attachEvent('onload', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }); } } </script> <div id="navbar-iframe-container"></div> <script type="text/javascript" src="https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js"></script> <script type="text/javascript"> gapi.load("gapi.iframes:gapi.iframes.style.bubble", function() { if (gapi.iframes && gapi.iframes.getContext) { gapi.iframes.getContext().openChild({ url: 'https://www.blogger.com/navbar.g?targetBlogID\x3d6390303\x26blogName\x3dStix+Blog\x26publishMode\x3dPUBLISH_MODE_BLOGSPOT\x26navbarType\x3dSILVER\x26layoutType\x3dCLASSIC\x26searchRoot\x3dhttp://stix1972.blogspot.com/search\x26blogLocale\x3den_US\x26v\x3d2\x26homepageUrl\x3dhttp://stix1972.blogspot.com/\x26vt\x3d2710463138340235647', where: document.getElementById("navbar-iframe-container"), id: "navbar-iframe" }); } }); </script>

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Militia, Shiite Leaders Bicker Over Shrine

Why don;t they just go on there and get Al Sadr and get this over with. He has lied too many times to trust him. The holy mosque needs to be taken and get these thugs out of there. It is no longer a mosque it is a bunker and should be taken over if not by US troops, but by the Iraqi military.
Militia, Shiite Leaders Bicker Over Shrine
NewsMax Wires Saturday, Aug. 21, 2004
NAJAF, Iraq -- Militants loyal to firebrand Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr remained in control of a revered Shiite shrine at the center of the crisis in Najaf on Saturday, as they bickered with top Shiite religious leaders over how to hand the holy site over. Despite the standoff, Najaf remained largely calm Saturday. Occasional explosions shook the city, but the violence was at a far lower level than fierce fighting that raged in the city earlier this week.

The violence in the city and a threatened government raid of the mosque risked inflaming the nation's majority Shiites and undermining the interim government's efforts to bring stability to the country and gain legitimacy for itself.

The crisis appeared on the verge of resolution Friday with insurgents' surprising decision to remove their weapons from the Imam Ali Shrine, where they had been hiding, and turn the holy site over to top Shiite clerics.

But the two sides were still debating how to arrange such a transfer Saturday.

Al-Sadr aides said they tried to hand the keys over to representatives of Iraq's top Shiite cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Husseini al-Sistani, who refused to accept them, demanding the shrine be evacuated first.

Sheik Ali Smeisim, a senior al-Sadr aide, said the militants wanted a delegation from al-Sistani's office to first inspect the shrine and make sure its treasures were intact, so that al-Sadr's followers would not be accused of stealing or damaging anything. Only then will the militants leave, he said.

Al-Sistani's aides say they will not send a delegation because of the security situation in the city.

"If the brothers in the office of ... al-Sadr want to vacate the holy shrine compound and close the doors and hand over the keys, then the office of the religious authority in Najaf will take the keys for safekeeping until the crisis ends," Sheik Hamed Khafaf, an al-Sistani aide, said from London where the cleric is undergoing medical treatment. "We cannot receive the shrine compound unless they agree to this formula."

Another al-Sadr aide Ahmed al-Shaibany, said earlier the keys had already been handed over, but later said that they had only offered to hand them over.

The shrine's keys are for the shrine compound's outer gates, inner doors and safes.

The proposed handover of the shrine to religious authorities offered a face-saving way to end fierce fighting between U.S. and Iraqi forces and al-Sadr's militia that has killed scores of people.

A peaceful pullout mediated by religious authorities would allow Iraq's interim government to keep its pledge not to negotiate and let the militants say they had not capitulated to U.S.-led troops.

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home