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Yemen war fuels Iraqi sectarianism

Operation Decisive Storm has stirred different positions within the Iraqi religious and political circles, be they Sunnis or Shiites.
Ammar al-Hakim, leader of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq (ISCI), speaks during a news conference with radical Shi'ite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr in Najaf, south of Baghdad, January 23, 2015.  REUTERS/Alaa Al-Marjani (IRAQ - Tags - Tags: POLITICS RELIGION CONFLICT) - RTR4MOPE
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BAGHDAD — Operation Decisive Storm in Yemen has stirred the Iraqi sectarian divide. While the Shiite majority opposes the campaign, the Sunnis are voicing support for it. These differing positions, expressed for the Shiites by the National Alliance and for the Sunnis by the Union of Nationalist Forces, led to a disagreement at a meeting of Iraqi political forces held at the home of parliament Speaker Salim al-Jubouri on March 29, when the Sunnis rejected a Shiite alliance proposal to issue a statement condemning the Saudi-led military operation.

Vice president Osama Najafi, a Sunni, had on March 28 announced his support for the “Arab alliance, which aims to undermine the Houthi influence in Yemen.” In an April 1 TV interview, Ammar al-Hakim, a Shiite and head of the Islamic Supreme Council, described the military intervention in Yemen as “a costly adventure with uncalculated consequences.”

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