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‘Stirring Shiite Resistance’ Decided In London: Report
Sadr faces arrest warrant by occupation forces
By Hadi Yahmid, IOL Correspondent
PARIS, April 9 (IslamOnline.net) - A decision to “stir the Iraqi Shiite resistance against the U.S.-led occupation” was agreed during a conference secretly held in London in mid-March, IslamOnlin.net could reveal.
The conference was attended by representatives of several major Islamic movements in Europe, along with some figures close to firebrand young Shiite leader Moqtada al-Sadr.
A representative of an Islamic movement in Europe told IOL Thursday, April8 , asking not to be named, “the secret debate to move the Shiite front against the American occupation in Iraq marked the most prominent among the recommendations of the Discreet Islamic Conference that was held in London March13 -14”.
The conference, according to the source, comprised some distinguished Islamic movements in Europe, representatives of Iraqi Islamic movement (Sunni and Shiite), especially a representative of Sadr, in addition to a representative of the international organization of Lebanese Hezbollah.
The source, however, stopped short of clarifying whether the recent - still going - confrontation between Sadr supporters and occupation forces was a direct outcome of that conference, or whether the attendees have actually laid down a form or date for activating the Shiite resistance.
“The Conference, entitled Islamic Movement and Iraq, witnessed a complete media blackout and it was held under maximum secrecy in one of London Islamic centers. Its goal was finding the necessary means for activating the Shiite front of Iraqi resistance.
“The attendees asserted that Sunni resistance alone was not enough for turning the balance of power with the occupying forces,” the source added.
So, they agreed to move the Shiite resistance from peaceful protests to a “much more effective role”.
The source said that representatives of Islamic groups clinched an agreement on a tripartite agenda, including speeding up Shiites’ inclusion in resistance operations against occupation forces.
Also, they agreed to avoid any armed clashes between Sunnis and Shiites after the handover of power scheduled for June30 .
The attendees found a common ground on the need to have a multi-party democratic system getting benefit of earlier experiences in Islamic countries.
The attendees also agreed to grant Sadr a larger margin of maneuverability on the ground - through straining relations and then facing occupation forces.
The U.S. occupation forces said Monday, April5 , it had issued an arrest warrant for Sadr, as the Shiite leader vowed defiance calling for an end to the one-year American occupation.
Shiite scholars have warned that U.S. troops of acting “irrationally” after up to 52 Iraqi protesters were killed Sunday, April4 , in the worst confrontations between Iraq’s Shiite majority and the U.S.-led occupation troops sine the start of the invasion one year ago.
The protesters were denouncing the crushing of two fellowmen by a U.S. tank on Saturday, April3 , the arrest of Sadr’s top assistant Sheikh Mostafa Al-Yaqoubi and a ban on Al-Hawza newspaper, Sadr’s mouthpiece.
U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld had ruled out an Iran-style religious government in Iraq.
“You're suggesting, how would we feel about an Iranian-type government with a few clerics running everything in the country, the answer is: That isn't going to happen," Rumsfeld have said.
The temporary national constitution, agreed by the U.S.-appointed Governing Council last month, also recognizes Islam as a source of the legislation rather than the only source.