Iraqi Shiites to Meet in Najaf to Discuss Factional Differences

Iraqi Shiites to Meet in Najaf to Discuss Factional Differences

Iraqi Shiite politicians and religious leaders are meeting in Najaf this weekend in the hope of overcoming factional differences and reaching agreement on at least a temporary halt in violence by their militias.

The key figure in the negotiations is Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, the influential Shiite spiritual leader who lives in Najaf and who was recently reported to be furious with the record levels of attacks by Shiite Muslim militia and Sunni insurgents. Sistani, who hardly ever makes public pronouncements, was recently reported as calling for a joint effort by Shiites, Sunni, and Kurds to halt Iraq's sectarian strife.

According to reports, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's Dawa party and Abdul Aziz al-Hakim, the Shiite theologian who heads the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI) and its Iranian-backed Badr corps militia, have agreed to rein in their militia if Moqtada al-Sadr, who controls the Shiite Mahdi army, will do the same.

Keep reading for free!

Get instant access to the rest of this article by submitting your email address below. You'll also get access to three articles of your choice each month and our free newsletter:

Or, Subscribe now to get full access.

Already a subscriber? Log in here .

What you’ll get with an All-Access subscription to World Politics Review:

A WPR subscription is like no other resource — it’s like having a personal curator and expert analyst of global affairs news. Subscribe now, and you’ll get:

  • Immediate and instant access to the full searchable library of tens of thousands of articles.
  • Daily articles with original analysis, written by leading topic experts, delivered to you every weekday.
  • Regular in-depth articles with deep dives into important issues and countries.
  • The Daily Review email, with our take on the day’s most important news, the latest WPR analysis, what’s on our radar, and more.
  • The Weekly Review email, with quick summaries of the week’s most important coverage, and what’s to come.
  • Completely ad-free reading.

And all of this is available to you when you subscribe today.