28 November 2007

Sistani calls for Sunni-Shiite Peace, 3 AQI killed

Here's a bit of good news from Iraq. Grand Ayatollah Sistani, the most influential Shiite in Iraq, has met with some Sunni religious leaders in the holy city of Najaf to offer peace and protection. Sistani's tremendous influence is underestimated in the West, and hopefully this will help a lot in calming the sectarian strife even further. Voices of Iraq has the story:

Top Shiite Cleric Ali al-Sistani urged Shiites to protect their Sunni brothers and defend them, Iraq's southern scholars head said Tuesday. Shiekh Khaled said at a press conference held in Najaf after the visit made by a delegation of Sunni and Shiite clerics to al-Sistani, "The top cleric asserted on the sanctity of Iraq's blood, urging Shiites to protect and defend Sunnis."

In other good news, 3 Al-Qaeda guys got schwacked (see MNF-I press release). One in Samarra, which was where the Al-Askari mosque got bombed in February 2006 by Al-Qaeda sparking sectarian violence throughout the country. The other two were killed in Kirkuk and were part of a VBIED (car bomb) network. That's good to hear, since a lot of the increased security in Baghdad and tribal awakening in Anbar province, sent Al-Qaeda scurrying into the northern provinces. This has caused substantial violence in the northern cities of Kirkuk, Mosul, Beyji, and Samarra. By rolling up or killing Al-Qaeda in the north, it will significantly decrease the violence against Al-Qaeda's primary target: Iraqi civilians. Good to know they can't hide from the security forces.