Saddam Hussein may face execution after first trial

[JURIST] Former Iraqi ruler Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] could be put to death after his first trial if he is convicted for his alleged role in a 1982 Shiite massacre [NPR report] in Dujail, an anonymous official close to the trial said Thursday. In June, Hussein reportedly turned down an earlier deal offered by the US [JURIST report] to avoid the death penalty by calling on insurgents to put down their weapons. Iraqi authorities are also building more than ten other cases against Hussein to be tried separately if he is not executed. Those cases include the killing of opposition leaders, the Anfal campaign that left tens of thousands of Kurds dead or homeless and another Shiite massacre after the Gulf War. The official said that a five-judge panel was expected to set a date for the Dujail trial "within the next few weeks," to begin in the fall, though Hussein's daughter, who has been running her father's defense team, has threatened to boycott the trial [AP report] unless a lawyer can meet with Saddam privately. AP has more.

 

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