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    Smallest of the two major branches of Islam, the other being Sunni
    Believe that some male descendants (known as Imams) of Muhammad have special moral/theological authority
    The term Shia means 'follower'
    Are approximately 10% of the worldwide Muslim population
    Founded in the Eighth Century AD
    Doesn't believing that only Imams can interpret the Koran infallibly make them some kind of divinely inspired royalty?
    Shia's are known as Shiites or Shi'tes which makes for some vulgar jokes among English speaking people.
    As a percentage of the overall Muslim population, they have committed far more terrorist violence in the Mideast than the Sunni.
    There is virtually no difference on major theological points between the Sunni and Shia which makes you wonder what the big deal is.
    They are divided into at least three major branches themselves.
    They are less hung up on following Sharia law.
    They have been savagely persecuted by the Sunni on occasion.
    Although a tiny minority of the worldwide Muslim population, they are the majority in Iran Iraq, Azerbaijan and Bahrain.
    Like people everywhere, they are overwhelmingly good and peace loving.

Credit: tom_jeffords

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