Baghdad this week dismantled a protest camp at Ramadi in western Anbar province where Sunni demonstrators had been staging a two-year sit-in to protest the perceived marginalization of their community. Following the storming of the camp, during which 10 people were killed, 40 Sunni MPs resigned, while local leaders and clerics called on soldiers to disobey orders. Protesters who replaced security forces in the streets of Ramadi demanded the army’s withdrawal and the release of Sunni MP Ahmad al-‘Alwani, arrested a fortnight ago in a raid on his house in which his brother was killed.
Shi’a Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki says the protest camp had been “turned into a headquarters for the leadership of al-Qa’ida;” the protesters counter that Baghdad has used tough anti-terrorism measures to discriminate against the Sunnis, including those who have fought al-Qa’ida. (CONTINUED - 517 WORDS)