News involving Saddam to report:
- Saddam’s principal defense attorney, Khalil Duleimi, has accused the U.S. military of confining the defense team in the Green Zone since the verdict was announced, preventing them from returning to Amman. Dulemi believes that their confinement represents a deliberate attempt on the part of the military to deprive them of access to the media and human-rights organizations.
- Saddam’s defense team is also demanding that the IHT investigate last month’s ransacking of their office in the Green Zone. Intruders damaged and stole dozens of documents.
- Unless Iraq builds a new execution chamber, Saddam will most likely be hanged in the Abu Ghraib complex, which houses Iraq’s only gallows.
- Not surprisingly, Iran enthusiastically supports Saddam’s execution.
- The Vatican, by contrast, opposes it — describing the death sentence as the “logic of vendetta.”
- Hosni Mubarak, the President of Egypt, believes that executing Saddam will increase sectarian and ethnic violence in Iraq.
- Leandro Despouy, the UN’s Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers, harshly criticized Saddam’s trial. His primary criticisms: the IHT’s inability to prosecute international crimes committed by non-Iraqi soldiers during the Gulf War and the invasion of Iraq; the Tribunal’s creation during an occupation by a foreign power; the death penalty; the impossibility of holding a fair trial in a climate of violence; the Tribunal’s failure to satisfy international standards of due process. Despouy recommends creating a new international tribunal to deal with the trial.