Shia Crescent

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The Shia Crescent is a geo-political term used to describe a region of the Middle East where the majority population is Shi'a, or where there is a strong Shi'a minority in the population. It has been used to describe the potential for cooperation among these areas in Middle Eastern politics. The corresponding term is especially common in German, where it is known as Schiitischer Halbmond ("shia halfmoon"). This term was coinedIan Black. :Events are proving that the king of Jordan was right to warn of a 'Shia crescent' across the Middle East - even though the phrase was a tad undiplomatic, writes Ian Black. The Guardian, 26 January 2007 by Abdullah II, king of Jordan, after which it became popular in political debates.

The nations where Shi'a Muslims form a dominant majority are Azerbaijan, Iran, Bahrain and Iraq, a plurality in Lebanon and large minorities in Turkey, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, India, UAE, and Syria. The shape of these countries put together does in fact resemble a crescent moon or a half moon (see map).<!--the map in no way reflects this list!-->

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