In a scene that has played out on a large scale in the Middle East for centuries, a Sunni Muslim and a Shia Muslim conflict escalated Sunday during a heated discussion about religion.

A Bowling Green man who is a Shia Muslim told the Bowling Green Police Deparmtent that another man, a Sunni, assaulted him during an argument over their respective religious beliefs.

The division of the Sunnis and Shias dates back to the death of the Muslim prophet Muhammad. The majority Sunni believe the leader of the Islamic community should be elected from those qualified. Shia Muslims believe the leader should remain within Muhammad's family. Shia Muslims, which make up about 10 percent of Muslims worldwide, have followed a line of Imams who they believe were appointed by Muhammad or God.

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