According to sources in Al-Najaf and Beirut, Shi'ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, leader of the Sadrist movement, plans on leaving Iran and move to Lebanon. The sources told A Sharq al Awsat newspaper that al-Sadr's departure comes in order to avoid further Iranian pressure, which is aimed at keeping Nuri al-Maliki at the post of Iraq's prime ministry.
"Al-Sadr rejected all the pressures and proposals made by Iranian officials for the approval of al-Maliki and today is planning seriously to go to Lebanon and stay in Beirut" , the sources said. They, however, ruled out the chance that Sadr will arrive in Beirut as the guest of Hizbullah's Secretary General of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah. "He doesn't want to be subject to Iranian control and thus not inclined to maintain strong relations with Hizbullah," the sources were quoted as saying .