Mudarrisi: Avoid Conflict
Ayatollah Muhammad Taqi Mudarrisi modified his recent demand that US troops leave the country immediately, according to al-Sharq al-Awsat. The cleric said that the Coalition troops would not stay long in Iraq, since that was neither something the Iraqi people want nor something in the interests of the Coalition. In the meantime, he said, what is needed is to avoid conflict and violence. It sounds as though someone in the US military had a little talk with Mudarrisi.
Also on Sunday, Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani met with Ibrahim Jaafari, a leader of the Shiite al-Da`wa Party and member of the Interim Governing Council. The two issued no statement, but presumably the IGC wants something from Sistani and was seeking it. Sistani has enormous moral authority with Iraqi Shiites.