Disputes between Sunnis and Shi'a over mosques continued. This is Law Number 188 and it is still in effect today, with rulings on related issues made by government-run courts. The Sabean community continues to decline; according to Sabean leaders, fewer than 20,000 remain in the country. On January 12 2005, gunmen assassinated a representative of the Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, the country's leading Shi'a spiritual leader. Thus, despite the Shari'a punishment for conversion, the Iraqi penal code does not import the Shari'a penalty, nor does it contain a similar penalty. While some within the Sunni community supported and even assisted the insurgency, many denounced the terrorism as vocally as their non-Sunni counterparts.
According to official estimates, the number of Christians decreased from 1. Religious Demography The country has an area of 437,072 square miles, and its population is approximately 26 million. The Sabeans had neither gained back their property nor received compensation for it by the end of the reporting period. However, it focused most of its resources and attention on the ongoing insurgency and reconstruction efforts during this reporting period; thus, it did not have the capacity to address actively issues relating to freedom of religion. The proposed changes have been a subject of controversy for years but this time it seems that politicians may finally be getting their way.
Thus Article 41 violates the unity of Iraqi national legislation. Insurgents attacked mosques in Sunni and Shi'a neighborhoods and killed clerics, other religious leaders, and private citizens of both sects. Twenty-five facilitators received advanced training and began establishing programs in their communities. Guests can post but they do have limited abilities. The proposed amendments instead would require the secular courts to apply religious law on marriage, divorce, and inheritance. Christians, Jews and other minorities are covered partly by the Personal Status Law, partly the Civil Law and partly their own personal status legal systems. Defined by the former regime as Arabs, many Yazidi now consider themselves to be Kurds, while others define themselves as both religiously and ethnically distinct from Muslim Kurds.
Several hours after the Armenian Church bombing, a group of armed intruders attacked the Chaldean Bishop's Palace, also in Mosul, and detonated explosive devices. There were also unverified reports of small numbers of Jews living in Kurdish areas. Matthew's Church killed three and injured 40. But under some religious laws, daughters would inherit even less and if the family has no son to inherit the agricultural land, it would revert to the state. Minister of Interior Baqr Jabr announced on June 5 that 12,000 citizens, 10,000 of them Shi'a, perished in the previous18 months of violence.
In his first address to the country on May 3, the Prime Minister emphasized the diversity of his ministers but emphasized that they would work for a unified nation. The man was also castigated for claiming that marrying a divorced woman would lift the injustice experienced by divorced women. For example, under the Jaafari Shia school of law, the woman has no right to the marital home, maintenance, or her dowry and children remain living with her for only two years, regardless of their age, during which she is not allowed to remarry. Restrictions on Religious Freedom Government policy and practices did not interfere with the free practice of religion; however, the ongoing insurgency had a significant, negative impact on the ability of all religious believers to practice their faith. Sheikh Mahmoud al-Madaini, his son, and four bodyguards were killed in the attack, which took place in the town of Mada'ain. If a wife requests a divorce, a judge can award her some of these benefits depending on the circumstances.
The composition of the Transitional Government reflected the majority status of the Shi'a, who were politically and economically disadvantaged under the former regime. Currently there are only two — the minister of health and the minister of housing. On January 16, the President of the Mandaean Supreme Spiritual Council, Basra Branch, was shot and killedafter being approached by three gunmen who demanded that he convert to Islam. Individuals fell victim not only to harassment and intimidation but also to kidnapping and even murder. The Government agreed to allot the Sabeans a seat on the Committee as well. Upon marriage, the husband is obliged to maintain his wife in accordance with the circumstances of both spouses subject to classical conditions. The Sabean Mandaean Association in Australia reported that, on February 7, a group of Muslims approached a Sabean deacon and priest trainee in Al Sowaira, demanding that he convert to Islam and assist in the conversion of other Sabeans.
Some non-Muslims accused the Government of discrimination, claiming that unqualified Shi'a applicants received preference over qualified non-Muslims. Additionally, many worshippers reportedly did not attend religious services or participate in religious events because of the threat of violence. According to a , 5 percent of Iraqi children are married by age 15, and 24 percent by age 18. The Christian and Other Religions Endowment reported that approximately 95 percent of such establishments closed due to threats by Islamic extremists. The outcome of that investigation was pending at the end of the reporting period. Some Shia parties evidently calculate that it will bring them an advantage in the polls. A new constitution was drafted in 1990 but was not adopted.
On August 1 2004, four churches in Baghdad and two churches in Mosul were bombed. Article 4 of the current provisional constitution declares Islam the state religion. Sabean is an ancient religion dating from the first 3 centuries C. These Courts have jurisdiction over marriage, divorce, legitimacy, succession, awqaf, etc. Since the 2003 liberation, the Government has not engaged in the persecution of any religious group, calling instead for tolerance and acceptance of all religious minorities.
Coalition-led forces overthrew the Ba'athist regime of Saddam Hussein in April 2003. It is the Government's policy to protect the rights of all religious groups to gather and worship freely; however, in practice, the ongoing insurgency impeded the ability of many citizens to worship freely. The proposed amendments instead would require the secular courts to apply religious law on marriage, divorce, and inheritance. Liquor store owners, primarily Christians and Yazidi, were especially hard hit in attacks by Islamic extremists during the reporting period. Shi'a Arabs, the religious majority of the population, were long disadvantaged economically, politically, and socially, but now constitute the majority in the Government. In 2005, when the commission was first formed there were two. Improvements and Positive Developments in Respect for Religious Freedom Despite the tenuous security environment and the Government's preoccupation with fighting the insurgency and rebuilding the country's infrastructure, the Government made improvements in respect for religious freedom during the reporting period.