Iraq slaps travel ban on Sunni vice-president

By REUTERS
December 19, 2011 14:16

 
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BAGHDAD - Iraq has banned Sunni Muslim Vice-President Tareq al-Hashemi from leaving the country, a security source said on Monday, sharpening a sectarian-tinged political crisis just after the last US troops departed.

The completion of the US withdrawal on Sunday ended nearly nine years of war, but left many Iraqis fearful that a shaky peace between majority Shi'ites and Sunnis might collapse and reignite sectarian violence.

"We received the travel ban order for Hashemi," said a senior security official, adding that the ban had been issued by five judges investigating allegations against the Sunni leader.

Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, a Shi'ite, has also asked parliament for a no-confidence vote against another leading Sunni politician, Saleh al-Mutlaq, who is deputy prime minister, on the grounds that he lacked faith in the political process.


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