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Iraq | International

Saddam Executed, Bush Hails
by IOL (reposted)
Saturday Dec 30th, 2006 9:42 AM
BAGHDAD — While millions of Muslims worldwide, including in Iraq, were busy celebrating the five-day `Eid Al-Adha, the Iraqi government executed on Saturday, December30 , ousted president Saddam Hussein.

"It was a terrifying scene. Saddam was in self-control. I was not expecting him to be like that," Moneer Haddad, a member of the panel of appeal court judges who had confirmed Saddam's conviction for crimes against humanity and who attended the pre-dawn execution, told Agence France-Presse (AFP).

Saddam,69 , appeared calm, chatting to his burly, leather-jacketed executioners as they wrapped his neck first in black cloth then a thick hemp rope and steered him forward on a metal platform.

The grey-bearded ousted president was maneuvered forward firmly but not aggressively by the guards.

Looking thin, he was dressed in a smart, dark overcoat over a pressed white shirt but no tie.

"He said he was not afraid of anyone," said judge Haddad.

"One of the attendants asked him 'are you afraid?' He said 'I have never been afraid as long as I lived. I lived as a mujahed and expected death any moment," he recalled.

Officials who witnessed the execution told AFP Saddam railed against his Iranian and American enemies and praising the Iraqi resistance.

Saddam, his half brother and intelligence chief Barzan Hassan al-Tikriti and revolutionary court judge Awad Ahmed al-Bandar were convicted of ordering collective punishment against the village of Dujail after agents of incumbent Premier Nuri al-Maliki's Dawa party tried to assassinate the strongman there in1982 .

On Tuesday, December26 , the appeal court upheld the sentences in a binding and final judgment, asserting the hanging should take place within 30 days.

The execution of Saddam's aides had been postponed until after the `Eid Al-Adha holiday, which ends on Thursday.

Televised

Iraqi private television broadcast a grainy video showing the dead body of Saddam draped in a white shroud in the hours following his pre-dawn execution.

The body, dressed in a black coat and white shirt, was shown wrapped in a white sheet in footage released by Biladi television.

His bearded head was tilted to the right.

The picture was shown shortly after Iraqi state television broadcast a brief film of the ousted president being placed in a noose by masked hangmen, cutting away just before his execution.

More
http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/Satellite?c=Article_C&cid=1165994311488&pagename=Zone-English-News/NWELayout
by Al Jazeera (reposted)
Saturday Dec 30th, 2006 9:43 AM
addam Hussein, the former Iraqi president, has been hanged, Iraqi officials have said.

The execution took place shortly before 6am (03:00 GMT) on Saturday at an Iraqi miltary facility in northern Baghdad.

Iraqi television later showed footage of Saddam being placed in a noose by hangmen, cutting away just before his execution.

The 69-year-old appeared calm, chatting to his hangmen as they wrapped his neck in black cloth and steered him towards the gallows.

Iraqi television later showed footage of his body.

Saddam was convicted last month of the killings of 148 Shias after a failed assassination attempt in 1982.

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http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/00086B05-1552-4329-BB22-02F15D2E25DF.htm
by UK Guardian (reposted)
Saturday Dec 30th, 2006 9:51 AM
Saddam Hussein was executed at dawn today following his conviction by an Iraqi court for crimes against humanity.

The death sentence was carried out at a former military intelligence headquarters in a Shia district of Baghdad at 6am local time (3am GMT).

One of those who witnessed the hanging, Sami al-Askari, an adviser to the Iraqi prime minister, said Saddam struggled when he was taken from his cell in a US military prison but was composed in his last moments. He expressed no remorse.

The former dictator, dressed in black, refused a hood and said he wanted the Koran he carried to the gallows to be given to a friend. "Before the rope was put around his neck, Saddam shouted. 'God is great. The nation will be victorious and Palestine is Arab'," Mr Askari told the Associated Press.

Another witness, Mowaffak al-Rubaie, Iraq's national security advisor, said Saddam was "strangely submissive" in the execution chamber. "He was a broken man," he said. "He was afraid. You could see fear in his face."

In a prepared statement, George Bush cautioned that Saddam's execution would not stop the violence in Iraq but said it was "an important milestone on Iraq's course to becoming a democracy that can govern, sustain and defend itself, and be an ally in the war on terror."

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http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,,1980290,00.html