Reuters: One of Iraq’s senior Sunni Arab leaders accused Iran on Monday of sponsoring Shi’ite death squads and plotting a “genocide” against Sunni Arabs. BAGHDAD (Reuters) – One of Iraq’s senior Sunni Arab leaders accused Iran on Monday of sponsoring Shi’ite death squads and plotting a “genocide” against Sunni Arabs.
Adnan al-Dulaimi, a senior figure in the main Sunni Arab political bloc in Baghdad, also warned in a bitter open letter to his fellow Sunni Muslims that the ethnic conflict in Iraq would spread throughout the Arabic-speaking world.
“Your brothers in Baghdad are suffering a genocide carried out by militias and the death squads with Iranian planning, instructions and weapons,” he wrote.
“If you think what is happening to us will end at Baghdad then you are wrong. By God, this war that started in Baghdad will not stop here. It will extend to every Arab spot where the Arabic tongue is spoken. It is a war of history.”
Sunni Arab groups often express similar views, but the tone of the letter was harsher than previous remarks by Dulaimi, a senior figure in the Accordance Front bloc.
The Front triggered a crisis earlier this month when it withdrew its six ministers from Iraq’s Shi’ite-led government.
Washington accuses predominantly Shi’ite Iran of providing weapons for Shi’ite militias in Iraq. Tehran denies sponsoring violence there.
Shi’ite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki wants political leaders to meet in the next few days to resolve Iraq’s political deadlock. He has said he would like Front ministers to return, but will find other Sunni Arabs to replace them if they refuse.
Maliki made a three-day visit to Iran last week, which he described as “successful”.