NewsSpecial WireIran-backed cleric calls for execution of Saddam

Iran-backed cleric calls for execution of Saddam

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Iran Focus: London, Dec. 06 – An Iranian-backed Iraqi Shiite cleric called on Monday for the execution of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. Iran Focus

London, Dec. 06 – An Iranian-backed Iraqi Shiite cleric called on Monday for the execution of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.

Abdul-Aziz al-Hakim heads the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI). Based in Iran for two decades before the U.S.-led war that toppled Saddam Hussein’s regime in 2003, al-Hakim led the Badr Brigades, the military wing of SCIRI, in a violent cross border struggle against Iraqi forces.

“This criminal deserves the death penalty, the highest punishment”, al-Hakim told Shiite Muslim students taking part in a rally in Baghdad.

Al-Hakim’s comments came as Hussein and seven co-defendants appeared in court to face charges of involvement in the 1982 killing of 148 people in the Shiite Muslim town of Dujail.

The SCIRI chief’s close Iranian ties and growing influence in Iraq has led many to fear that Iraq was heading toward closer ties with Iran, and, possibly, the establishment of a government based on Iran’s theocratic model.

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