Iraqi court to try Saddam

Ousted President Saddam Hussein remains in Iraq and will be handed over to a special court being set up by the US-appointed Governing Council.

    Governing Council is setting up a court to try the ousted leader

    The former Iraqi leader will face charges of genocide and invasion of neighbouring countries, US occupation chief Paul Bremer said in an interview published on Saturday.

    "Saddam is in Iraq now, and yes he will be tried publicly by a special Iraqi court when the prerequisites for setting up such a court are completed," Bremer told the Arabic-language daily al-Sharq al-Awsat.

    "The Governing Council has started setting up the special court and we have spent some funds on that and he (Saddam) will be tried publicly after bringing charges of mass killing and invading neighbouring countries against him."

    "Saddam will be handed over to the Governing Council after it finishes setting up the court," Bremer said.

    'Uncooperative' prisoner

    Asked if Saddam was cooperating with investigators, Bremer replied: "He is not cooperating, but he is not a troublemaker either."

    "He has not given us any important or useful information up to now and has not confessed to the whereabouts of his offshore funds, but we know for sure that he has a lot of money outside Iraq."

    He told the London-based paper: "Saddam was in good health as shown by recent medical exams." But no new photographs of him will be released before his trial, nor will any interviews be allowed.

    The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has insisted on its right to interview Saddam, who was reportedly captured by US military on 13 December and confirmed enemy prisoner of war on 10 January.

    ICRC spokeswoman Nada Dumani told AFP last week Saddam could not be tried in Iraq until the country regained its sovereignty owing to Geneva Conventions restrictions. 

    SOURCE: AFP


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