Photo: Thaier Al-Sudani / Reuters
The growing influence of Shiite militias which helped liberate Iraq from militants of the terrorist organization “Islamic state” (IG, is prohibited in Russia), may lead to the revival of jihadist support from residents of the country are Sunnis. About it writes The Washington Post.
As the newspaper notes, the militias are Shiites who support Iran, acted in the framework of the so-called Forces of popular mobilization (SNM). In total, this Association consisted of some 150 thousand soldiers. They took an active part in almost every battle that was fought in Iraq in operation to oust from the country of ISIS.
As a result, under the control of the Shiites were a significant number of settlements, including those where Sunnis have traditionally lived in the provinces of Anbar, Salahuddin and Nineveh. On the main roads in these areas, militia have created checkpoints, which levy tax on vehicles carrying oil, food and goods for the home. As told to The Washington Post sources among Iraqi and American officials, some Shiite militias are behaving like the mafia, demanding that local entrepreneurs the money for the shelter.
In addition, the Shiites determine which Sunni families living on the captured militants territories, allowed to return to their homes after the victory over the terrorists. At the same time, the newspaper notes, in some cities, the leaders of the militia forced the local administration to void the property rights of the Sunnis in that they owned land and property under the pretext that they allegedly supported ISIS.
At the same time, the Shiites managed to get almost a third of the seats in the Iraqi Parliament election held in 2018. This situation, according to The Washington Post, raises serious concerns among residents of Sunni and Iraqi politicians and US officials.
“This can lead to destabilization of the situation in the region”, — said one of the sources among Western officials. In addition, according to him, such a strengthening of the position of the Shiite groups will lead to the fact that an increasing number of people living in Iraq, the Sunnis will begin to seek the support of the Sunnis fighting in the ranks of the “Islamic state”.
Terrorists “Islamic state” occupied part of the territory of Iraq in the summer of 2014. After a year with the support of the international coalition, the Iraqi government began a massive campaign to liberate areas seized by militants. In December 2017, the Prime Minister of Iraq Haidar al-Abadi announced the final victory over the IG, noting that the threat of terrorism in the country continues.
About 65 percent of the Iraqi population — the Shia, Sunnis make up about 30-37 percent.
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