Sunday, December 3, 2006

IAo Exclusive - Bush meeting with Al-Hakim: Part I - SCIRI

The Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI) was founded in Tehran back in 1982 by some of the leadership and members of the Islamic Dawa Party in exile after the party was decimated and weakened in Iraq by Saddam. The goal of SCIRI was to overthrow Saddam's regime and install an Islamic government based on the Iranian model in Iraq. Naturally, SCIRI has been supported by the Iranian regime since its foundation. SCIRI was led by Ayatollah Mohammed Baqir Al-Hakim until his assisination in August 2003 afterwhich his brother Abdul Aziz Al-Hakim took over the leadership.

After the fall of Saddam Hossein, SCIRI emerged as the strongest Shiite party, rivaled only by the Al-Sadr movement. Furthermore, SCIRI has toned down its stance and rhetoric and claims to be committed to democracy and cooperation with other political groups while trying to distance itself form Al-Sadr. Nonetheless, SCIRI, the Al-Sadr movement, Prime Minister's Al-Maliki's Dawa Party and some smaller parties form the United Iraqi Alliance coalition, the largest coalition in the parliamrnt and the governemnt.

Al-Hakim has recently stated that the current crisis in Iraq is political in nature and not a civil war. Therefore, it should only be resolved through political means with the cooperation of all Iraqis, including Sunnis, Kurds, Christians and Turkmen as well as Shiites.

There you have it: IRANian AMERICAn observer's exclusive about the history of SCIRI.

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