Kazem al-Haeri

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Grand Ayatollah Kazem al-Husseini al-Haeri
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Grand Ayatollah Kazem al-Husseini al-Haeri

Grand Ayatollah Kazem al-Husseini al-Haeri or Kadhem al-Husseini al-Haeri is a prominent Shia leader. Al-Haeri was born in Iran, but moved to Iraq to lead the Shia community there. He was a top leader of the Al-Da'wa Party in Iraq. His involvement in the party led to his exile in the 1970s, when he moved to Iran, where he remains to this day in the holy city of Qom.

He is considered the sucessor to Ayatollah Muhammad Sadeq al-Sadr, and is currently the religious advisor to al-Sadr's son, Muqtada al-Sadr. Like al-Sadr, al-Haeri is a supporter of an Islamic state in Iraq, as opposed to clerics such as Ali al-Sistani who advocate a separation of religion and government in a Shia nation.

Relationship with Muqtada Al-Sadr

Al-Haeri is considered the sucessor to the father of Muqtada al-Sadr, but since al-Haeri has resided in Iran since the 1970s he has not been able to fully take on this position. Despite his exile, he serves as the advisor to the younger al-Sadr on matters of jurisprudence on account of the fact that al-Haeri has reached the rank of marja, while Muqtada al-Sadr has not. Thus, al-Haeri is a key source of legitamacy for Al-Sadr. Al-Sadr had previously stated that he would have worked with Sayed Mohammed Baqir al-Hakim if al-Haeri had ordered it, but this never happened. This is not surprising, as the elder Al-Sadr was in competition with al-Hakim.

Al-Haeri has also issued fatwas against the U.S.-led occupation of Iraq, but he publicly criticized Muqtada al-Sadr for launching an insurrection against the United States in April of 2004 while taking al-Haeri's name.

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