Saddam judge investigating Halabja poison gas attack Jeannie Shawl at 12:04 PM ET
[JURIST] An Iraqi judge investigating charges against Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] met with Kurdish officials Monday to gather information about the 1988 poison gas attack [Wikipedia backgrounder] against the northern Iraq village of Halabja. The investigating judge from the Iraqi Special Tribunal [official website] visited Halabja in order to "inspect and collect information regarding the use of weapons of mass destruction against the city," according to a statement released the regional Kurdistan cabinet. In July, the tribunal filed its first criminal charge [JURIST report] against Hussein in connection with the 1982 killing of some 150 Shiites in the village of Dujail in retribution for an assassination attempt. The Dujail charge is seen as a relatively minor case amongst the allegations against Hussein, but prosecutors have indicated that they expect a fairly easy conviction on that charge. Experts predict that allegations of genocide in Halabja will be much more difficult to prove because the prosecution will have to establish a chain of command that links back to Hussein. Reuters has more.
Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible, ad-free format.