Khamis Khanjar, (C) a Sunni multimillionaire, visits displaced Sunni Iraqis at a school he funds in Iraqi Kurdistan, Iraq, February 16, 2016. REUTERS/Ned Parker
Your feedback is important to us!
We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.
Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.
Alert: If you are facing problems with posting comments, please note that you must verify your email with Disqus prior to posting a comment. follow this link to make sure your account meets the requirements. (http://bit.ly/vDisqus)
For at least a decade, Iraqi business mogul Khamis Khanjar has bankrolled Sunni politicians and fighters alike. Now, he wants to use his multimillion-dollar fortune to create an autonomous region for Iraq's Sunnis. Khanjar's emergence from backroom deal-maker to would-be Sunni champion is just one sign of Iraq's continued political drift.Efforts by Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to reconcile Iraq's Sunni and Shiites have mostly foundered, despite increased U.S. engagement in Iraq. Shiite parties and militias are often more focused on their own internal power struggles than brokering a political compromise with Sunnis. Sunni tribes tell security officials and politicians they are at the mercy of both Sunni militant group Daesh (ISIS) and Shiite militias.Sunni and Shiite politicians alike have tried to woo him at one time or another, including some who despise him.Former Sunni guerrillas in Iraq say he helped fund the anti-U.S. insurgency that began soon after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion.In 2010, Khanjar said he helped found one of the two main political lists in Iraq's national elections. Three years later, he helped finance nationwide Sunni protests against Baghdad.Ezzat Shabandar, a Shiite politician, who negotiated with Khanjar during the 2010 Iraqi government formation process, described the tycoon as the man the Shiite parties had to talk with earlier this decade.
FOLLOW THIS ARTICLE