The fall of Saddam Hussein’s regime as a result of the US occupation in 2003, has generated new dynamics and rivalries in the religious domain. The transformation from a “secular”, Sunni-dominated regime into one based on ethno-religious categories, in which Shii Islamists played a key role, has been a factor in the reconstitution of Shii religious authority, which eventually emerged as a powerful, extra-constitutional actor. In the Sunni religious field, the removal of strict state control and support, and the absence of a unified leadership, resulted in further fragmentation and rivalries that continue until today, with several actors claiming the right of leadership and representation of the Sunni religious domain.
The roundtable will discuss these transformations, the relationship between the state and religious actors in post-2003 Iraq, and the emerging trends in both Shii and Sunni religious domains.
Speaker | Harith Hasan, Nonresident Senior Fellow, Carnegie Middle East Center.
Everyone is welcome.