Iraq Sunnis: Minister arrest warrant targets sect

June 27, 2007 14:35


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An arrest warrant against a Sunni Cabinet minister is another step by the Shi'ite-led government to marginalize the country's Sunni minority, the official's political organization said Wednesday. The comments were made one day after Iraqi commandos raided the Baghdad home of Culture Minister Asad Kamal al-Hashimi and detained about 40 of his guards. The minister was not at home at the time, but officials said a warrant had been issued for his arrest in a 2005 assassination attempt on another politician. Those moves have angered Sunni groups and politicians, who warn they could jeopardize US-backed reconciliation efforts. The United States has been pushing for a greater role for Sunnis, who dominated Iraq's politics for decades until the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime in 2003. Muhannad al-Issawi, a spokesman for Sunni politician Adnan al-Dulaimi, told The Associated Press by telephone that the warrant was "a political matter, not a judicial one," adding that "it aims to marginalize the Sunnis" and their main parliamentary bloc, the Iraqi Accordance Front.

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