Sayyid Ammar Al Hakim, head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq, called to establish a joint regional defense system that does beyond the small and random sensitivities, stressing the need to form joint anti-terrorism units among the countries of the region because terrorism is now their common challenge. His eminence called to hold a regional Islamic conference to set the visions and discuss the required mechanism to counter terrorism and restore confidence among the regional states, indicating that the terrorist project is intended to cover the entire region without exclusion and that what is happening in Iraq is just part of it. He considered that those who think they’re safe from the movement of deviance and takfirism are but deluded, highlighting that the crimes of terrorism should be classified as crimes against humanity in international forums. In this regard, his eminence pointed out that the crimes of Nazism were not more atrocious than those committed by the terrorist ISIS, calling again to consider the historical document issued by the higher religious authority a declaration of human rights and an Islamic instrument for civil rights and social peace in conflict zones. His eminence clarified that the wise authority is well aware of its religious and human duties, especially at this critical time of attacks on Islam from every direction. Sayyid Al Hakim affirmed that the higher authority, through its historical document, has defended Islam and protected it from deliberate distortion, just like it has defended the nation and protected society from aggression. He added that some did not envisage that the religious authority will play this pivotal role in such difficult circumstances, because, he explained, “they were not aware of the authority’s history and great stances over hundreds of years”. His eminence underlined that the commitment to the authority’s approach and the abidance by its instructions are based on the conviction that it is capable of identifying the nation’s priorities and guiding the nation under extraordinary circumstances. He shed light on the global conviction that the wise religious authority has become a security valve for social peace and coexistence among components and a source of trust for global powers and international organizations.
This came during the celebration of the birth of Lady Zainab (AS) held in his eminence’s office in Baghdad onWednesday, February 25, 2015.
Creating the Proper Political Environment is Very Important at this Stage
His eminence explained that the new Iraqi government, despite its young age, has done a lot and taken courageous steps in several areas, notably by establishing calm and trust among the different parties in spite of some political spoilers here and there. For him, the current political environment is positive if compared to the abnormal situation prevailing in the country, and he considered that creating the proper political environment is very important at this stage. His eminence insisted on working intensively to strengthen trust and communication among the different parties, adding however that “the road is still long before the government reaches safety. There is reluctance in some important and sensitive issues like the takeover of governmental positions, the violation of the principle of balances, and the continuous policy of nomination by proxy, which is a real obstacle to economic development”. Sayyid Al Hakim described the government’s steps to strengthen decentralization as stunted, as they still haven’t reached the phase of efficient and practical implementation. He explained that the stumbling at the levels of service and administration in Iraq is due to the existence of certain laws that restrict the work of local governments, in addition to the intersection of the work of these governments with some service ministries and their inability to accelerate administrative procedures locally. His eminence explained in fact that the law No. 21, which grants extensive prerogatives to local governments, is still blocked since the government has not taken a decision in this regard. On another level, he called the ministry of higher education to draw back its decision to decrease the salaries of students on scholarships abroad, adding that he’s aware of the monetary crisis faced by the government but it is possible to exclude the investment in brains and scientific potentials from any austerity policies, especially that such procedure could deprive thousands of students from their studies, and thus waste all the governmental efforts and expenses made to support those students in the previous years.
The Relationship between the Federal Government and the Region of Kurdistan Government Will be Complicated If the Conflict between Them Turns into a Conflict of Wills
His Eminence pointed out to media escalation between the federal government and the government of Kurdistan regarding their relationship, calling not to turn the conflict on oil to a conflict of wills and to keep it within normal limits since it is a conflict of administrative and technical measures. Al-Hakim warned that the relationship between the federal government and that of the region of Kurdistan will be complicated if the conflict between them turns into a conflict of wills and it will be hard to find a solution in these critical circumstances existing in the region and Iraq; therefore, we will be offering a free gift to terrorism and to the forces that fish in troubled water, expressing his satisfaction with the presence of wise leadership in the region of Kurdistan, who know well how to preserve the rights of all Iraqis and how to miss the opportunity for those who subsist on the differences between brothers and work on inciting them to turn into conflicts, underlining, at the same time, his confidence in the government wisdom, its ability to find solutions to difficult problems, its sincere intention to work in team spirit with the government of the region of Kurdistan and find solutions which are consistent with everybody and represent a meeting point. His Eminence considered solidarity in this critical phase as a top priority and that the internal problems no matter how difficult or complex they are, should be deemed problems within the same house and shouldn’t distract us from fighting our real enemy.
Iraqis Faced with Only Two Choices: Either the State Project or the Chaos Project
Sayyid Ammar al-Hakim pointed out that the national reconciliation dossier must begin by the fact that true reconciliation will be realized with those enjoying strong will and genuine representation so that this reconciliation will be effective and efficient in creating healthy future relations between the different parties, stating that the Iraqi people do not need, in general, a community reconciliation as much as they need a political reconciliation, indicating that bitter experience has proved that Iraqis, from different ethnicities and sects, have a unified target against terrorism, takfir and obscurantism, and that the one unified Iraq will be the sole real title which contains the Iraqis and fulfills their aspirations; otherwise, all the projects are incomplete and immature. He stated that we will pay high prices to keep Iraq as one and united country, but this price must be paid by Iraqis to keep their country strong, unified and away from rupture and fragmentation, stressing they are faced with only two choices: either the state project or the chaos project, and that he has confidence that obscurantist takfiri terrorism and all who support it are with the chaos project; yet, all Iraqis of all sects and ethnic backgrounds are with the state project despite all the suffering, pain and agonies of displacement, dislodgment and terrorism. He stated that we shall pay high price to maintain our homeland and the destiny of Iraq is to be the country of all of us and we will proudly pay the price of its unity, honor, sovereignty, independence and prosperity at any cost without any delay.
Terrorism under any Denomination (ISIS, Boko Haram, Al Qaida) Is an Evil Project Targeted against Islam
The head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq described the challenges Iraq has been facing as universal, not only regional or Iraqi, explaining that this is the greatest battle of Islam and that of the entire mankind, yet of the entire world, though the focus is on the Iraqi front. He said the fact the Iraq was chosen as the front of this battle is not by chance, for Iraq was always the center of all events and the main and clear compass that determines their directions, adding that today, the Iraqis are waging a battle to defend Islam against those with twisted mind, who harmed its reputation with their shameful conduct and sick fatwas, considering it as fierce and dangerous battle where it is difficult to distinguish between those who deliberately perverted, and those who were tricked into joining them, and where it is difficult to distinguish between enemies and friends, and where enemies are sometimes mistaken for friends, while maintaining that the Islamic nation in general is in great pains and all the Islamic states without exception are facing a pivotal challenge, reminding that he was the first to warn against this malign doctrinal epidemic from this platform.
According to him, without the will of challenge of Muhammad, the wisdom of Ali, the truce of Hassan, the revolution of Hussain, the righteousness of Zainab, the piety of al Sajjad, and the knowledge of al-Baqir, and other virtues of our successive Imams, Islam would be lost because of misinterpretation, perversion, imposture and pretention. Moreover, he said thanks to their sacrifices, the Imams (AS) used to turn the Islamic history into stops to reconsider and correct things, adding that with their pure bodies, the great Iraqis are not only defending Iraq, but also Islam and the entire mankind. Here he stated that the terrorists used all means of deception and trickery to justify their crimes, but Allah showed who they really are and the Iraqi blood was the way to expose them as the blood of Imam Hussain (AS) and his companions was the way to expose the hateful Umayyad perverted mind and as the tragedy of Zainab al Hawraa and her being taken as hostage were the way to reveal the vileness of the one who claimed to be the caliph of the Muslims and to govern in the name of the message of the prophet Muhammad (PBUH), while he was taking his women and descendants as hostages. He also described terrorism under any denomination (ISIS, Boko Haram, Al Qaida) as the evil project which explicitly declares the Jihad in the name of Islam while it intends to harm Islam, humiliate the Muslims, destroy their communities and cities and violate their states. For him, this is not a political, religious or denominational terrorism; rather, this is a terrorist project that is corroding the body of the Islamic nation from inside and taking away its children, and whoever thinks that this is a denominational conflict is wrong and unconsciously contributes to the development of this terrorist evil project. He said, “From Morocco to South Philippines, through Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Iraqi and Saudi Arabia to Pakistan, Afghanistan, Malaysia and Indonesia all over the area of the Islamic territory, there are extremist terrorist spots united under one denomination, working on implementing one single project and backed by the great, organized international powers”, describing the division of the terrorism issue as naïve, for the caliphate of perversion in Mosul is closer to Turkey than it is to Iran, has common borders with the region of Kurdistan and Syria and is inserting its claws in the heart of Iraq, and therefore, it is impossible to deal with it on our own and give it the time to get more rooted through its tumoral existence. He also said it is logical to address our own local issues and problems in a more realistic way and to consider this stage and the challenges we are facing, adding that the Iraqi patient women derive their patience from the spirit of this occasion of faith. He declared that he repudiates anyone who has done injustice to Ahl-al-Bayt (AS) and violated the religion and the sanctities in the name of faith. For him, it is the culture of taking women as hostages that tarnished the reputation of Islam and kidnapped the Muslims, and not others, and it is the political terrorism perpetrated in the name of the faith and the doctrine and it is the jihad of aggression, violation, taking as hostages, burning and perversion that spoils the original Islamic Jihad of Muhammad and that of the freedom and the dignity.
Sheikh Salman Symbolizes Moderation and his Trial Will Trouble the Reformative Projects
His Eminence said he is sorry for the trial of Sheikh Ali Salman, General Secretary of Al Wefaq political society and important symbol of moderation in the sister kingdom of Bahrain, and for the type of restrictions imposed at the court which refused to allow the broadcasting of original videos revealing how much fake the fabricated videos that were considered as proof for conviction are. Given the importance he attaches to the Arab and Islamic brotherhood, he expressed his strong interest in the unity, security and stability of the Bahraini people and his deep concern from this process that troubles and blocks all the reformative projects that call to do justice and maintain security and stability in the Kingdom of Bahrain, wishing that these policies can be seriously reconsidered in this case and that the harmony and the peaceful coexistence between the brother Bahrain citizens will be restored.