2013-01-15 10:11:00

Primakov alarmed by inter-Islamic strife in Middle East

Moscow, January, 15, Interfax - Russia's ex prime-minister, Mercury Club president and Academy of Science Presidium member Evgeny Primakov said it is wrong to look at the Islamic forces in the Middle East as a single camp.

"About two years have passed since the Arab Spring wave of revolutionary protests toppled the authoritarian rulers in the Middle East and North Africa. But the Arab Spring was followed by a freeze, with Islamic forces strengthening their positions. It would be wrong to view all of them as one camp.

There are moderate Islamists within it, with whom representatives of other religions and secular states could walk along together. But also, there are radicals and extremists who want to impose the principles and ideas alien to true Islam," Primakov told the Mercury Club.

Therefore, the future of the Middle East and North Africa now depends not only on the policy pursued by the leading powers, but also on the alignment of forces in the Islamic political camp, he said.

The tragedy in Syria is a consequence of the struggle between the Islamic trends.

"The U.S. operation in Iraq triggered off a loss of balance in the Middle East, sparking up a bloody fight between the two main trends in Islam - the Sunnis and the Shiites. The tragedy in Syria is a consequence of such a gap. At the same time, actions supposedly facilitating democratization in that country, gave rise to opposition to the Syrian regime - a community controlled by an international union of extremist Islamists," Primakov said.