Ramsey Clark on planned execution of Saddam Hussein, other defendants in Iraq

“The sudden decision of the so-called appeals court in Iraq, which did
not take the time to examine the trial record and defense briefs, has
set the stage for the imminent execution of Saddam Hussein, two other
defendants and the surrender of four other defendants to the Iraqi
government, exposing them to summary executions, torture and cruel, inhumane and degrading punishment – all in violation of U.S. and international
law.

“The decision could take place at any moment. The Iraqi government and
the Bush administration apparently plan to carry out this execution
quickly.

“The great weight of international legal opinion has found the Iraqi
Special Tribunal subject to political pressures, lacking independence and
not impartial, and that the trial failed to provide due process of law
and was unfair. The Iraqi Study Group found political interference with
Iraqi courts ‘ruthless.’ Executions following such a notoriously unfair
trial will severely harm the rule of law.

“Executions, if they occur in the midst the present violence, are
expected to cause a long term increase in the level of violence causing more
U.S. and Iraqi casualties.

“Saddam Hussein and his co-defendants are in the custody of the U.S.
military in Iraq. They will be turned over to Iraq only on the order of
or with the approval of President Bush. His pending decision will have
long term consequences for the peace and stability of Iraq, and for the
rule of law as a means to peace.”

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Hooman Hedayati

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