04/06/2006, 00.00
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Iraqi Islamic Reconciliation Summit in Amman

Religious leaders from many Middle Eastern countries will gather on April 22 in the Jordanian capital. They are expected to sign a declaration stating that fighting between Shiite and Sunnis in Iraq "has no legitimate religious basis."

Amman (AsiaNews) – Jordan will host the "Iraqi Islamic Reconciliation Summit" on April 22 that will include Iraq's top Sunni, Shiite and Kurdish religious and tribal leaders" in a bid to stem sectarian violence and tension in the neighbouring country, an official statement said Wednesday.

Jordan's King Abdullah will attend the meeting, organised by the Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought in cooperation with the Arab League, and join the delegates in a call for an end to bloodshed and religious tension in Iraq.

The summit is expected to issue a declaration signed by all participants that fighting between Shiite and Sunnis "has no legitimate religious basis."

According to a statement released by the Institute and published in the Jordan Times, "[p]eace in Iraq cannot be achieved without a political solution, and a political solution cannot, in turn, be achieved without a religious solution because fighting in Iraq has generally occurred along religious sectarian lines, especially among Iraq's Arab Muslim communities."

The conference will be attended by top religious figures from Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Syria, the Gulf and Iran. Sheikh Mohammad Sayyed Tantawi of Al-Azhar University, one of Sunni Islam's greatest cultural institutions, and Arab League Secretary General Amr Musa are expected to take part in the event.

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