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In an afternoon news conference in Baghdad, Defense Minister Sadoun Dulame said he had ''received many complaints from citizens against the Defense Ministry about the random raids and arrest campaigns that have been done by the Iraqi forces."
From now on, he said, ''it is strictly prohibited that any employee of the Defense Ministry raid worship places."
Responding to another frequent Sunni complaint, Dulame said that he would work to see that persons detained by the government were processed more quickly and released if no ties to terrorism were found.
US and Iraqi officials believe the insurgency, which has taken more than 430 lives since Iraq's Cabinet was introduced late last month, is largely made up of Iraqi Sunnis and Arab fighters from other countries.
But Sunni leaders have expressed outrage in recent weeks over a spate of raids on their mosques and political organizations.
The National Dialogue Council, a Sunni political group whose negotiations with Jaafari helped lead to the inclusion of several Sunnis in his Cabinet, has been raided three times this month, its members say, although it is still unclear who was responsible for the incidents. Last week Iraqi security forces raided Baghdad's Mukhtar Mosque, detaining its preacher, Sheikh Abdul Karim.