Sunday, June 18, 2006

Threats Against Sunnis In Basra

NOTE: Scroll down for update

I received a short message from Queen Amidala this morning. The situation in Basra is getting worse by the moment:

The situation in Basra isn't getting any better. On the contrary, it's getting worse.

Last Friday, some insurgents killed sheikh of Basra's Great Mosque (Sunni) while he was leaving the mosque. It's the biggest mosque in Basra for Sunni people.

And, there is a rumor on the streets that the Shia militias want all Sunnis out of Basra by the end of July. Why? Because the Shia wants federalism for the southern provinces and Sunnis might interfere or reject the idea.

I will keep you informed about the situation. But it will be somewhat difficult. We have no electricity and it's getting worse. Also, the fuel situation is very bad. The lines of cars waiting for fuel is getting longer and longer.

Talk to you later..

Queen Amidala

What happened to the iron-fist approach by the Iraqi government in the green zone?

Reuters AlertNet reported today:

BAGHDAD, June 18 (Reuters) - A Sunni Muslim body said on Sunday it would close until further notice all but one of Basra's Sunni mosques in protest at the killing of a cleric in the southern city.
Unknown gunmen shot dead Yusif al-Hassan near the mosque where he led prayers in Basra, 550 km (340 miles) south of Baghdad, colleagues said. He was the second Sunni religious figure killed in Basra in less than two months.

"On this occasion we declare that we will close all the (Sunni) mosques in Basra with the exception of the Grand Mosque as a protest and condemnation of what is happening in that city," the statement said.


UPDATE II - Jun. 19, 2006
Queen Amidala sent me another sad message from Basra this afternoon. Here's what has happened within the last 24 hours:

The 22nd has not arrived yet and here I have another blow. The same as before. They shot 2 of my friends. A man and his wife in front of their house. The same as they did with my two Assyrian friends two years ago. Only this time they are Muslims. The husband died and the wife is in a critical condition.

I don't know if it's good for her or not. She was so much in love with him. She is a Sunni and he was a Shia. She is in hospital right now.

I will send you more information soon. The e/c is OFF again. I'm staying home by the way.


Queen Amidala

She mentioned the 22nd on her e-mail to me yesterday. I'm not sure what she means by this date. Please keep her, her family and friends in your prayers.

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