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Saddam on the gallows
Photo: AP
Saddam's burial site
Photo: AP
Saddam lawyers claim his body was abused
Lawyers of deposed Iraqi leader say they will sue Iraqi government at International Court of Justice over abuses by executioners during and after execution

A member of Saddam Hussein's legal team said Sunday that she intends on suing the Iraqi government at the International Court of Justice over the taunting of the former leader by executioners on the gallows.

 

Bushra al-Khalil told the Saudi daily al-Watan that she will sue the Iraqi authorities for allowing two of Saddam's personal foes to attend the execution and over reports that executioners had abused the dead body of the former leader.

 

She claimed that Shiite leader Abdel Aziz al-Hakim and Muqtada al-Sadr were present at the execution.

 

She added that the court will be asked to authorize that Saddam's body be exhumed for an autopsy to check for abuse signs on his body.

 

The Shiite al-Hakim clan accuses Saddam of having ordered the execution of hundreds of opposition Shiite leaders, while Muktada al-Sadr accuses the Iraqi leader of having killed his father Mohammad al-Sadr.

 

A short footage of the execution recorded on a mobile phone and published on the internet showing Saddam being taunted by the executioners before hanged stirred anger among Iraq's Sunnis and drew a wave of criticism from the international community.

 

In the video, witnesses are heard telling Saddam to "go to hell" and praising al-Sadr as the Iraqi leader kept his calm second before hanging.

 

Delaying execution of codefendants 

Rumors have it that Saddam's legal team are cashing in on the controversial footage to delay the execution of Saddam's half brother and the head of Iraq's Revolutionary Court.

 

Defense lawyers have submitted a request with the Pentagon demanding that Barzan Ibrahim and Awad Hamed al-Bandar not be handed to the Iraqi authorities until an investigation into Saddam's execution is completed.

 

"We have also sent a letter to the United Nations and Amnesty International about the issue. The United Nations is working but not in the scope we expected, as it acted on the declarative level only. We expected it takes a decision that will commit the Iraqi government as happens with other nations," she said.

 

"The law will be breached again by the Iraqi government and Saddam's deputy, Taha Yassin Ramadan will be executed without being allowed to stand a fair trial," she said.

 

The Iraqi Appeals Court supported prosecution claims that a life sentence handed down on Saddam is insufficient and ordered he'd be executed.

 

She said that her team was unaware of the dates on which Saddam's half brother and former justice chief will be executed.

 

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