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Report: Jordan May Expel Harith al-Dari
Cleric a Key Figurehead for Iraqi Resistance, Critic of US Presence
11/14/2008 5:05 PM ET
Harith al-Dhari.
Harith al-Dhari.

Jordanian officials are considering the expulsion of a prominent Sunni cleric in exile on Jordanian soil. According to a report in Arabic from an Iraqi news agency, authorities in the Hashemite Kingdom are studying methods to remove Harith al-Dari, an outspoken critic of the Iraqi government and US presence in Iraq, and figurehead of the Iraqi resistance from the country.

Al-Dari, the general secretary of the Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq (AMSI), is currently in exile in Jordan, but al-Malaf Press reports in Arabic that "well-informed sources close to Jordanian intelligence" have revealed that high-level Jordanian officials are seeking methods for his removal.

According to the news agency's sources, a meeting was held recently between a Jordanian official and unidentified Iraqi figures in the Jordanian capital Amman, in which the unnamed Jordanian official informed the Iraqis that a resolution to expel the opposition cleric is under review "at the highest levels" in the kingdom.

Al-Malaf Press writes that the Jordanian official reportedly told the Iraqi figures that al-Dari's presence in the kingdom "upset" the Jordanians, and that the dissident cleric's ties to the Iraqi resistance groups was causing concern in the kingdom.

The sources added that al-Dari's alleged ties with other -- also unspecified -- countries, with whom Jordan "does not have good relations," was another cause for concern among Jordanian officials.

According to al-Malaf Press, Jordanian officials are now examining the means by which al-Dari can be expelled from the country, seeking a method that "will not affect his personal dignity or put him at odds" with Jordan.

The agency notes that its sources did not specify a date for when the possible expulsion might be due.


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