Agencies, 5 January
The Muslim Clerics' Association (MCA) said in a statement on Thursday that fighters linked to an unnamed political group were planning attacks.
Al-Maliki's office said on Friday: "The statement from the Muslim Clerics' Association is totally baseless and raises tension, and we hold the Muslim Clerics responsible for any action that results from this."
Sectarian tension has been high in
The statement of the MCA, an umbrella grouping of Sunni religious leaders, did not identify the armed groups or say they were Shia.
However, the suggestion in the statement that the fighters had links to government parties is a strong indication to Iraqis that it was accusing Shia groups.
After al-Maliki rushed through the hanging of Saddam, a Sunni, and a video circulation showed the former Iraqi leader being taunted on the gallows by Shias, there have been fears of sectarian violence in the capital.
But there were no reports from
In an interview published on Friday in the Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot, Mubarak said that when it became clear that the hanging was imminent, he sent a message to George Bush, the
Mubarak said: "Don't do it at this time. Why is it necessary to hang (him) just at the time when people are saying the holiday prayers."
He said the insensitive timing was then followed by the clandestine video showing "shocking pictures, primitive pictures" of Saddam being taunted by his Iraqi guards and then dangling from a rope.
Mubarak said: "It was disgraceful and very painful. I'm not going to say whether Saddam deserved the death penalty or not, I'm also not going to go into the question of whether that court is legal under the occupation.
"When all's said and done, nobody will ever forget the circumstances and the manner in which Saddam was executed. They have made him into a martyr, while the problems within
In a separate development, Ahmad Khatami, an influential Iranian cleric, has accused the
Khatami told worshippers at Friday prayers, in a sermon broadcast on state radio, that: "
"Do not doubt that the enemy's plan in
Khatami is member of the Assembly of Experts, a clerical body, and a regular leader of Friday prayers in the capital,
Saddam, who was executed on Saturday, was tried in a US-sponsored court but the