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Iraq Special Report

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  Iraq's Fractured Opposition

Ahmed Chalabi

Ahmed Chalabi

Vernon Loeb
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, December 18, 1998; Page A57

Opposition to Iraqi President Saddam Hussein is weak and disjointed, and there is no organization inside the country to present a workable alternative. Here are the most important groups operating from exile:

Iraqi National Congress

Founded in 1992 as an anti-Saddam Hussein umbrella group; originally sought to unite Kurdish factions. Formerly the principal U.S. aid client, it was practically wiped out inside Iraq when Saddam Hussein crushed a rebellion in northern Iraq in 1996, while the United States stood aside. It now operates from London and is headed by Ahmed Chalabi.

Iraqi National Accord

Has received financial support from the United States, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Britain. Opened office in Amman, Jordan, in 1996 and started a radio station. Leader is Ayad Alawi.

Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq

Headquarters in Tehran.

Massoud Barzani
Massoud Barzani
Shiite Muslims

This is the only group of dissidents involved in any fighting against Baghdad; it receives support from Iran.

Kurdistan Democratic Party

Led by Massoud Barzani, left; joined with the Baghdad government to defeat Kurdish rivals, the Iraqi National Congress, in 1996.

Patriotic Union of Kurdistan

Led by Jalal Talabani. Earlier this year, Talabani sent envoys to Baghdad to make peace with Saddam Hussein.

Movement for Constitutional Monarchy

Led by Sharif Hussein, a member of Iraq's former royal family.

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