Sunday, May 27, 2007

Sistani 'Representative' says 'foreign troops are controlling everything', and decries human rights efforts towards detainees

Grand Ayatollah al-Sistani is Iraq's most important Shi'ite religious figure, and a major power broker behind the scenes

Karbala, May 25, (VOI)- Top Shiite cleric Ali al-Sistani's representative in the city of Karbala said on Friday that there is a state inside the state in Iraq, urging the Iraqi government to deal with the deteriorating security situation in a more decisive way.

Addressing a Shiite gathering during the Friday prayer in the grand mosque of al-Hussein, Sheikh Ahmed al-Safi said "there is a state inside Iraq and the government does not control security files. The foreign troops are controlling everything."

"The government has to have a prestige, manage everything in all fields after the country has become open to the world," the Shiite cleric also said.

He called for breaking off relations with countries that support "terrorism", saying "we should sever ties with the countries that support and finance terrorism as Iraq loses scores of its sons everyday."

Al-Safi described some security apparatus elements as "betrayers", noting that "we call security departments to inform them about (terrorists), but no one move until the (terrorists) defiled the whole region."

He also criticized human rights organizations, saying "human rights organizations inspect jails, where killers exist, but no one care about the victims of those killers and this harms their credibility."

"The prisoner is being respected but at the expense of widows and orphans," the Shiite official noted.

"These organizations have to visit widows and orphans to highlight that Iraq is a victim of (terrorism) and it has a generation of victims, more than half of them live under the poverty line," al-Safi explained.

"There are 18,000 "terrorists" being arrested, but the Iraqi judicial system can not try them because the occupation forces spoiled their criminal identifications."

"This is a treason and the state has to boost its capabilities because people are living in fear of this tragic situation." he concluded.

From VOI

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Iraq still denying Red Cross access to prisoners