Ulema Council issues Fatwa on Iraqi oil law
Iraq's Council of the Ulema, a group of senior Sunni Muslim clerics led by Sheikh Harith al-Darri, has emitted a fatwa (religious edict) forbidding members of parliament from ratifying a draft law on oil and gas which has already been approved by the gove
The crucial oil law that the United States is pressing Baghdad to pass now goes to parliament for debate.
The council which is the leading Sunni religious authority in Iraq said in a statement Wednesday that "the approval by members of the government of this terrible law is forbidden and null, and anyone who does [vote for it] will be probed and called to account [for this]."
The statement explained that "the project falls within the accords signed by politicians who have gained their positions thanks to the occupation and this could lead to a huge waste of national wealth."
This, the Council says, "is the opinion of various energy experts who say the law allows foreign companies to exert their supremacy over the resources of the country."
The fatwa states that anyone who expresses their opinion on the law, let alone approves it, "will incur the wrath of God in that the consequences of the connivance with the enemy in defrauding public wealth will fall on those who commit this crime, which is a betrayal of God, of his Prophet and of all Muslims."
The Ulema Council refuses to enter into government or to sit around a negotiating table with the executive as long as occupation forces remain on Iraqi soil
The draft law on oil and gas was approved by the government of Nouri al-Maliki on Tuesday and has been sent to parliament for approval.
The work of the current parliament has been virtually paralysed for some weeks now after the bloc loyal to Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr and the Sunni Concord Front - the main Sunni political grouping - decided to boycott proceedings, meaning it is impossible to reach the quorum required to pass legislation.
AKI Last Mod: 05 Temmuz 2007, 11:49