Monday, October 10, 2005

Saddam may never come to trial?

Salem Hussein, the nephew of Ahmed Chalabi, Iraqi's powerful vice prime minister for Iraq who is in charge of oil and energy issues, told an audience at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative Washington think tank, on 5 October 2005, that Saddam's trial may never come to fruition.

Incessant delays have afforded Saddam's defense team more time to attack the legitimacy of the Special Tribunal by claiming the 2003 Iraq war that toppled the longtime Iraqi leader was illegal to begin with, Salem Chalabi said.

Amatzia Baram, a senior fellow of the Woodrow Wilson International Center, told the same AEI meeting that growing worries in Baghdad over security threats from the escalating insurgency in Iraq may hinder the current Iraqi government's ability to successfully hold Saddam's trial at this time

The sheer intensity of the Iraq insurgency has also hampered the country's capacity for constructive institution building and the state system there, including the judiciary, is faltering, Salem Chalabi said.

Saddam's trial is currently scheduled to start on Oct. 19, four days after Iraq holds a referendum vote to approve its new draft constitution.



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