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What Is the Difference Between Sunni and Shiite Muslims

What Is the Difference Between Sunni and Shiite Muslims
10-5-05 (Updated 6-13-14) Google Questions tags: Islam, Muslims, Shiites, Sunnis by HNN Staff Related Links The Islam religion was founded by Mohammed in the seventh century. In 622 he founded the first Islamic state, a theocracy in Medina, a city in western Saudi Arabia located north of Mecca. There are two branches of the religion he founded. The Sunni branch believes that the first four caliphs--Mohammed's successors--rightfully took his place as the leaders of Muslims. Shiites, in contrast, believe that only the heirs of the fourth caliph, Ali, are the legitimate successors of Mohammed. Another difference between Sunnis and Shiites has to do with the Mahdi, “the rightly-guided one” whose role is to bring a just global caliphate into being. In a special 9-11 edition of the Journal of American History, Appleby explained that the Shiite outlook is far different from the Sunni's, a difference that is highly significant: Osama bin Laden was a Sunni Muslim. syreda hunny ibrahim - 3/24/2011

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