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The Shia Claim of Caliphate vs the Sunni Claim

Reader comment on item: Erdo─čan's Turkish Delight
in response to reader comment: Caliph Erdogan?

Submitted by Mike Ramirez (United States), Nov 14, 2019 at 16:24

This is the main difference and reason for the Shia and Sunni power struggle over which sect has the right to rule the Muslim world. While Shia (Iran) are adamant that the rightful successor needs to be related to the family line of Muhammad, the Sunni (think Saudis) belief is that the Caliph only needs to be the most devout, trustworthy and responsible individual who is chosen through the consensus of the Muslim community to be their rightful leader. This stems from the fact that Muhammad did not make it crystal clear about whom could succeed him upon his death. Thus, Erdogan sincerely believes he has a chance to be the next Caliphate even though he may not be a descendent of Muhammad's family line.

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