The government of Iraq continued to respond vigorously on Monday to a tip from the new interim leaders in Libya that former members of Saddam Hussein’s military and Baath Party were plotting a coup — so much so that critics are now saying that the information has become a pretext for arresting its political opponents.
As the overwhelming majority of high-ranking Baathists were Sunnis, the mass arrests by the Shiite-controlled government of Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki is fanning sectarian tensions, just six weeks before the United States military is scheduled to withdraw its last soldiers.
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