The deadline of the (Iraq) election, set by the end of January, favors the clash between Shiites and Sunnis. The Shiites, about 60 percent of the total population, do not want a postponement. The vote would legitimate their majority. ... On the other end, the Sunnis are hoping for a delay. And they express this wish in different ways.
Members of the coalition stress the difficulty of voting in an atmosphere of insecurity ... with men and women forced to vote under death threats. The guerrillas, headed by the Sunnis, are much more determined and are involved in actions against government units that are mainly formed by Shiites and Kurds.
Undoubtedly, the aim of the armed opposition is causing a battle between the two groups. A danger ... that certainly worries many Iraqis, who ... try to live normally, with courage, under bombings and shootings.
La Repubblica, Rome, Dec. 8
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