Declaration on the legal necessity to halt the proceedings against POW President Saddam Hussain

The BRussells Tribunal, 29 June 2006.

* Messages of solidarity for the declaration

 

Further reading:

* The Illegality of the Executions of Mr Barzan Ibrahim Al-Tikriti and Judge Awad Al-Bandar (Curtis Doebbler, 08 Jan 2007)

* What this murder demands, Statement by Abdul Ilah Albayaty, Ian Douglas, Karen Parker, Felicity Arbuthnot (BRussells Tribunal Advisory Committee), Hana Albayaty, Dirk Adriaensens, Inge Van De Merlen (BRussells Tribunal Executive Committee) - 6 January 2007  [French]  -  [Arabic]

* The execution of the president, Statement by Abdul Ilah Albayaty, Ian Douglas, Karen Parker (BRussells Tribunal Advisory Committee), Hana Albayaty, Dirk Adriaensens, Inge Van De Merlen (BRussells Tribunal Executive Committee) - 29 Dec 2006

* The First panel of the Iraqi High Criminal Court07 Nov 2006

* Defense Committee for President Saddam Hussein and his Comrades in Iraq07 Nov 2006  

* Justice is impossible under occupation , 06 Nov 2006.

* Proceedings and Verdict in the show trial of Mr. Hussain are illegal - Some relevant questions and answers , 05 Nov 2006.

* When All Else Fails..., Riverbend, 05 Nov 2006.

* UN Human Rights Body declares Saddam detention illegal, as a violation of Human Rights Law , 01 Nov 2006.

* The Myth of the “Anfal Genocide”, David Hungerford, October 2006.

* Statement on the Show Trial Of President Saddam Hussein and Comrades, The Defense Committee for President Saddam Hussein, 28 Sept 2006.

* Probing for the truth, Max Fuller calls for independent criminal inquiries into Iraq's extrajudicial executions, 30 June 2006.

* Lynching Saddam, Gabriele Zamparini

* The Trial of Saddam Hussein / Anti-war Movement Must Reject Colonial 'Justice', Sara Flounders, co-director of the International Action Center, 09 Dec 2005.

*Why Saddam is important, Ian Douglas, 15 Dec 2005.

 

Declaration on the legal necessity to halt the proceedings against POW President Saddam Hussain.

1.            On  June  21,  2006, attorney Khamis al-Obaidi was killed in Baghdad. He is the third defense counsel for Mr. Saddam Hussain to be killed, joining Mr. Sadoun al-Janabi, killed in October 2005 and Adel al-Zubaidi, killed in November 2005. Attorney Thamir al-Khuzaie was wounded in the November incident. 

2.            Attorney al-Obaidi was the ninth person connected with the trial of Mr. Hussain to be killed, prompting another attorney in the case, Najeeb al-Naimi (former Qatari minister of justice), to state: "there is no security. All of us have received threats."  

3.            The murder of yet another defense counsel has prompted many concerned with the overall situation in Iraq to question whether all proceedings should be halted due to the undue risk of the participants' lives and safety. While agreeing that proceeding should be halted on safety grounds, we also have more fundamental legal questions about the detention and trial of Mr. Hussain in light of existing rules of the laws and customs of war (humanitarian law), and the laws established under the international system of human rights. These bodies of law are binding on all judicial actions.  

4.            In order to sort out all the possible irregularities if not violations of fair trial rules from both humanitarian and human rights law, we must first state that Mr. Hussain is a prisoner of war. This is because he was the commander-in-chief of the armed forces of Iraq in the war by the United States against Iraq. As a POW, he is entitled to all provisions of Geneva Convention III of 1949, Protocol Additional I to the Geneva Conventions, and all binding customary humanitarian law relating to confinement of POWs. Of particular note in this regard is Article 22 of Geneva Convention III, which provides that POWs may not be held in penitentiaries unless in the interest of the POWs themselves. It appears that Article 22 is being violated in the confinement of Mr. Hussain, and we also question whether there is full application of the rights set out in Articles 25 - 27 regarding other conditions. In this light we urge that the authorities allow full access of the International Committee of the Red Cross or other competent organization to assess the conditions of confinement. It appears that the US has clear  physical control over Mr. Hussain. 

5.            Of key importance in this situation is to determine who may try Mr. Hussain and for what acts. While the invasion of Iraq by the United States forces was illegal, the Geneva Conventions nonetheless apply, and under provisions of the Geneva Convention, the United States, as the Occupying Power, may charge and try Mr. Hussain for acts in contravention of humanitarian law. Whether on Occupying Power could try a POW for human rights violations occurring outside the context of the armed conflict raises serious questions. (That question was only partially raised in the Astiz case: Mr. Astiz was captured in the Malvinas War, but was alleged to have participated in human rights violations in Argentina. Several States wanted to try him for those violations, but he was instead returned to Argentina by the Protecting Power). The United States, for political reasons, did not want to try Mr. Hussain itself because Mr. Hussain had not committed any actionable offences against the United States, either during the US-Iraqi war or at any other time. Further, the United States would not have been able to validly sentence Mr. Hussain unless as a result of a proceeding in the same courts as it uses for its own armed forces (Article 102), provided that a number of other conditions are met. The United States could turn Mr. Hussain to a neutral State (or in Geneva Convention language Protecting Power), but also for political reasons did not choose to do so. In fact, the United States has not authorized any State[s] as Protecting Power[s]. However, as the Astiz case suggests, a Protecting Power itself can neither try a person under its protection in its own courts for criminal acts committed in another State, nor turn a Protected Person over to a third party State. The United States could also try Mr. Hussain in its own civil courts "if its laws permit civil courts jurisdiction over its own armed forces (Article 84). Instead, the United Stated turned Mr. Hussain over to a specially constituted "court" of occupied Iraq, supposedly under the command of a judicial system controlled by the "Iraqi" government. The "Iraqi" government, however, is not an independent State, but one controlled by the Occupying Power. In the situation in Iraq, there is essentially no functioning, independent judiciary, and there had not been any provision in the old judicial system for trying POWs in civilian courts. The Occupying Power destroyed any possibility of Iraqi military tribunals as the venue for trying Mr. Hussain. The Iraqi court is inherently biased and fails to meet minimun standards of impartiality. The situation, then, is one of total judicial abnormality with a lack of legal authority. Accordingly, the trial of Mr. Hussain should be halted until such time as there is a court with proper legal authority and with jurisdiction over the alleged acts at issue.  

6.            While the court itself is a legal aberration and must be halted on that ground alone, it is still important to point out that in the process as a whole, there have been numerous violations of other minimum requirements for either military or civil courts, as set out in Article 9 and 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. So even if there may be some grounds for "legalizing" an illegal tribunal, the proceedings in themselves would require nullification of either imposition of or carrying out any sentence.  

7.           It is important to note that the crimes that Mr. Hussain is currently charged with did not take place in the context of the current war: in fact they did not take place in the context of any war and thus are not actionable as breaches of the Geneva Conventions or other instruments or principles of humanitarian law. The alleged crimes are criminal law violations, not war crimes. Conditions in Iraq preclude meaningful, impartial investigation into the events, and even if a proper-constituted court were to be established, fair trial rules relating to evidence may be impossible to meet.  

8.            The trial of Mr. Hussain is taking place in a context of the daily commission of grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions by the Occupying Power. Under such conditions alone, the trial should be halted as impossible under the circumstances. 

9.            The 1945 Nuremberg Charter states clearly: "To initiate a war of aggression ..is not only an international crime, it is the supreme international crime, differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole." The UN Charter and its Definition of Aggression (GA Res. 3314) reinforce this rule. Since the invasion under the Nuremberg and UN Charters was utterly illegal, all that followed from it is illegal, from Mr. Bremer's laws to the new constitution to the trial of Mr. Hussain. 

10.         For the reasons set out above, the current judicial proceedings against Mr. Hussain should be halted. The provisions of Geneva Convention III relating to Protecting Powers and POWs should be implemented regarding Mr. Hussain and all similarly situated persons of the government in place at the time of the invasion of Iraq who are detained in Iraq. All persons involved with the proceedings must be fully protected.  

To all those who respect international legality: Please raise your voice against the constant breaking of international rules governing Mr. Saddam Hussain's trial.  

The BRussells Tribunal, in defence of international law, and in solidarity with the defense counsel and staff and with the families of those killed.

29 June 2006.


UN Human Rights Body declares Saddam detention illegal as a violation of Human Rights Law.

(01 November 2006)

A United Nations expert on human rights law body has declared the trial of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein before an Iraqi special court illegal because it violates the right to fair trial under international law. 

In the decision handed down on 1 September 2006, but not provided to the former Iraqi President's lawyers until just a few days ago, the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detentions found that the "deprivation of liberty of Mr. Saddam Hussein is arbitrary, being in contravention of article 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political rights to which Iraq and the United States are parties." 

The Working Group—which consists of legal experts from Iran, Algeria, Paraguay, Spain and Hungary—spent more than two years collecting information and reviewing the case before making its decision. The Working Group's decisions are based on its interpretation of international treaties, primarily the International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights. In this case the Working Group found article 14 of the International Covenant to have been violated in numerous ways. 

On 30 November 2005, the Working Group had issued a Preliminary Opinion and requested the United States and Iraq to remedy the situation. Since then, as a second trial began, another defence lawyer has been killed, the United States government has continued to fail to provide adequate security, a relative of one of the judges has been killed, the defence lawyers have been threatened to the extent that they can no longer safely participate in proceedings, and the violations of due process in the courtroom have continued. 

"The decision of the UN Working Group is not surprising. Anyone who has been following the trial knows that it has been a gross abuse of law. The Working Opinion vindicates what I and other international legal experts have been claiming for months. The ball is now in the United States' court. Together with the occupation government it has installed in Iraq, the United States government must decide if it will respect international law or whether it continues to act with disrespect for this law," said Dr. Curtis F.J. Doebbler, a professor law at An-Najah National University and the lawyer for the former Iraqi President who filed the case. 

Doebbler added, "If the United States continues to so blatantly violate international law, the rest of the international community must impose very serious consequences. If they do not, we will have lost the war to all those who say that law does not count and that violence is the only way forward. Is this the message George Bush wants to send? It is the message he is sending." 

The Working Group lacks authority to enforce its decisions, however, States that act contrary to the decision of the Working Group have been considered by the international community in the past as pariah states and have often been subjected to sanctions, restrictions on the travel of their officials, and boycotts. 

For further information contact Mr. Arno Develay at +1-646-853-7472.


The Defense Committee for President Saddam Hussein, his Comrades and all detainees

STATEMENT ON THE SHOW TRIAL OF PRESIDENT SADDAM HUSSEIN AND COMRADES 

To the great people of Iraq, to the ardent Arabs and the good people of the world:

Day after day, the agenda of the so-called Iraqi Higher Criminal Court is being exposed. The latest sessions of the proceedings of the so-called “Anfal case” — on 20 September 2006, when the defense counsel withdrew from the courtroom, and proceedings on 25 and 26 of September — have all proven that this trial is a farce and nothing more than victors’ justice to take political revenge on the legitimate leader of Iraq — President Saddam Hussein — and his comrades. The trial has nothing to do with law or with seeking justice, a value that is being crushed under the boots of invading foreign forces.

The position of the defense, and those who are defending justice and supporting fairness, has been vindicated: that this court is very far from law or judicial due process, and that it is an instrument in the hands of the politicians and occupiers of Iraq designed to quench their thirst for revenge against the president, his comrades and the Iraqi people. The most explicit expression of this is the overt intervention of the Iraqi government in the work of this court by first exerting pressure on Judge Rizgar Amin, then removing Judge Saeed Hammashi, and now removing Judge Abdullah Al-Amiri and replacing him by someone dolefully inexperienced. Moreover, the court has deliberately and routinely muzzled the mouths of the accused and intimidated, frightened and threatened their lawyers. Also it imprisoned defense witnesses in acts unprecedented in the judicial world. These acts caused grave harm to the image of the Iraqi legal system.

The Defense Committee, illustrating the shameful course of events in the Criminal Court, is keen to remind Iraqi, Arab and world public opinion of the following facts that should be recognized by all parties, drawn attention to, considered, and responsibility towards them assumed: 

·        The Iraqi Higher Criminal Court is no more than a creature of the American/Persian occupation of Iraq. Its establishment, existence and financing by a subordinate office of the American Embassy proves our judgment of its illegality.

·        Judges, prosecutors and personnel of the court are vetted on the grounds of political, sectarian or doctrinal enmities. They all have one factor in common, which is their loyalty to the occupiers. Events and statements have proven the overt intervention of the Iraqi government in nominating, appointing, removing and rewarding judges.

·        The extreme deterioration and attendant dangers of the security situation under which Iraq is living since it was occupied makes it impossible for any party to guarantee the protection of participants in the trials, especially of defense lawyers. Four defense lawyers have been murdered so far, in addition to the killing of 39 lawyers who were supporters of the Defense Committee but were not members of it; this aside from continued threats against other lawyers and their families.

The evidence is decisive that it is impossible to provide a real and active defense for those being tried before this court.

·        The scale of violations that marked the performance of the first and the second trials have turned the Court into a show trial with only one aim, which is to provide a media forum to raise allegations in order to incite public opinion and prepare it to accept the decision of execution already made against the president and his comrades. These violations include:

-          Preventing defense lawyers from making their arguments freely and restraining them

-          Threatening defense witnesses, then arresting and torturing them

-          Depending on forged documents

-          Preventing non-Iraqi lawyers from making arguments before the court

-          Refusing to response to requests made by lawyers

-          Refusing to give adequate time to defense lawyers to review 10,000 pages of documentation 

Although the Defense Committee has long been aware of all the above-mentioned facts, it decided from the beginning to defend its clients with zeal inside the courtroom. Nevertheless, the defense was obliged to suspend its attendance when the scale of breaches and violations amounted to such a degree that attendance may lend undeserved legitimacy to the court or may turn the defense into a false witness, a prospect we absolutely reject.

The Criminal Court insists on conducting these trials in an occupied Iraq, where hundreds of people die daily, where politicians incite openly the killing of lawyers, where militias work freely and the government, which is appointed by the occupation, intervenes overtly in the workings of the court. All of these violations, including grave procedural abuses that nullify the right of defense, forestall any opportunity to secure justice.

We call upon world public opinion, with its organizations and segments, to work towards stopping this farce that has intentionally prejudiced the feelings of Iraqis, Arabs and all good people by repeatedly attacking the dignity of President Saddam and his comrades.  

Defense Committee for

President Saddam Hussein

And his Comrades

28 September 2006


Probing for the truth

(Friday 30 June 2006) 

MAX FULLER calls for independent criminal inquiries into Iraq's extrajudicial executions.  

IN November 2005, the lawyer Khamis al-Obeidi, who has been representing Saddam Hussein and his half-brother Barzan Ibrahim in court, stated, in relation to the recent murder of his colleague Adel Muhammad al-Zubeidi: "If there were a serious investigation into the previous murder of Janabi (a defence lawyer murdered just a month beforehand) and the perpetrators had been arrested, we would not see today's crime.  

"We demand a thorough investigation and severe punishment for the criminals behind today's terrorist crime against lawyers who were only doing their job." 

The truth of Mr Obeidi's assertion applied not only to the killing of Adel al-Zubeidi but, prophetically, to his own assassination at the hands of gunmen last week. 

If investigators had followed the trail related to the killing of Sadoun Nasouaf al-Janabi in October, they would have been able to establish not only that Mr Janabi was seized by gunmen from his office, as the BBC and others reported, but that, according to Sheik Hemeid Faraj al-Janabi speaking to Al Hayat, those gunmen arrived bearing Interior Ministry identification and that they transported Mr Janabi to a detention facility in the Jadiriyah district of Baghdad.  

Not only would this have led investigators to discover the underground bunker and torture chamber - where Mr Janabi was almost certainly killed - a month before US troops stumbled across it but it would have enabled them to follow a murky chain of connections and command structures that would have taken them to the intelligence office of the operations directorate at the Ministry of the Interior (MOI), from where the raids launched by paramilitary police commandos and their ilk are orchestrated.  

Of course, at the time, these offices were under the direction of the notorious Badr commander then serving as interior minister, Bayan Jabr, linked to the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq. 

But, if the investigators had just gone a little further, they would have discovered the Multi-National Force-Iraq cell within the MOI national command centre and they might even have noticed that, as the New York Times said, "Uniformed American officers and other Americans in plain clothes are an obtrusive presence in the Adnan Palace, where most top Interior Ministry officials, including Mr Jabr, now work."  

If anyone bothers to investigate the death of Mr Obeidi, they will uncover much the same chain of intellectual authorship, with MOI representatives in police vehicles hauling Mr Obeidi from his home in the middle of the night for "questioning."  

If such an investigation is carried out, those involved will rapidly discover that reports that Mr Obeidi had been taken away by members of the so-called Mahdi Army, which is loyal to radical cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, amounts to no more than saying that MOI forces were responsible. 

And, like any modern-day Sherlock Holmes, they will soon be forced to conclude that disposing of Mr Obeidi's tortured corpse under an image of al-Sadr's father and firing some shots in the air does not constitute proof of guilt acceptable in any courtroom in the world.  

What those investigators would undoubtedly have to consider is that the only parties to directly benefit from the killings and intimidation of Saddam's legal team are Iraq's occupiers, for whom a conviction would be one of the tiny shreds of justification remaining for an invasion that constitutes an example of what the United Nations defined as the most terrible of all possible crimes - the crime of war itself.  

The truth is that it is not Saddam who is on trial but nearly 40 years of Iraq's history, with the failings and achievements of a state that set itself irreconcilably against Western imperialism with the nationalisation of its own oil resources in 1972 reduced to wranglings over the authenticity of purported signatures relating to an attempted coup d'état 10 years later. 

But it doesn't matter what you think about Iraq under the Ba'ath. The words of Mr Obeidi ring as true for the whole of Iraqi society today, under occupation, as they do for the assassinations of Saddam's lawyers.  

Former UN human rights chief in Iraq John Pace told us that, of the thousand or so targeted killings which take place each month in Baghdad alone, the majority of them are directly linked to the MOI. 

We are bombarded with accusations that this or that militia is responsible, but, if one single genuine investigation is undertaken, we might see an end to these crimes which amount to a genocide against the Iraqi people. 

It is high time that we all lent our voices to the calls coming out of Iraq for independent, international criminal inquiries into extrajudicial executions. 

This is not only vital to bring an end to the culture of impunity with which officials of the occupation-installed, backed and run MOI commit massacres, it would also form an important step towards building a climate in which no-one can resist the call to bring the troops home. 

MAX FULLER
Messages of solidarity

 

مكتوب بواسطة: IRAdmin Jul 5 2006, 10:21 PM
On behalf of 10,600 members of http://www.Iraqpatrol.com we strongly endorse

http://www.brusselstribunal.org/HussainAppeal.htm  Issued by Brussels Tribunal for the reasons mentioned in the said declaration and for the following :
 
* The US-led invasion without Security Council authorization violates international law

* on 16 sept. 2004 US Secretary-General Kofi Annan announced that the invasion and occupation of Iraq is illegal.

* It is in violation of prohibition of the use of force by one country against another according to article 2(4) of the Charter of the United Nations and under customary international law.

* Creation of the Iraqi special Tribunal (IST) by the illegal occupiers is thus illegal.

* The goal of the IST is to impose the victor's justice and to justify the illegal occupation by capturing and trying and executing the president of Iraq who dared challenge an empire in the making, also, the tribunal will distract attention away from the Occupiers own illegal actions.

* Under international law, when illegal acts have such consequences, all states are obliged not to recognize them according to article 41 (2) of International Law Commision's Draft Article on State Responsibility.

* Mr. Saddam Hussein and co- defendants are Prisoners of War.

* The unfairness of the trial include every provision in article 14 of the International Convenant On Civil and Political Rights.
 
* Defense lawyers have been denied confidential visits with their clients. access to investigative hearings, prior notice of witnesses and access to evidence; the main evidence which is the whole file of the trials of al-Dujail is missing Impartial judges

* Rejection of the defense lawyers' motions on the illegality of the tribunal and disqualification of the judges.

* Three of the defense lawyers were assassinated and the others are recieving threats.

* One of the defense witnesses was assassinated and 4 of them were terrified and detained by the same Tribunal.

* Leandro Despouy, the Special Rapporteur on independence of the judges and laweyers expressed in his March 2006 report his reservations regarding the legitimacy of the tribunal.

* John Pace UN human rights chief in Iraq described the human rights situation as deteriorating daily.

* Lawyer Curtis Doebbler, an American member of Saddam Hussein legal defense team and a professor of law says :"Taking a stand on the issue of unfair trial would be a good place for the UN to start promoting human rights.

* We call for the halt of the proceedings or transfer of the trials to the Hague.

* Also we believe it is very important to address this urgent appeal to these UN bodies and persons:


- Mr. Kofi A. Annan, The Secretary General of the United Nations
- Secretary of the International Law Commission
- Under-secretary General for Legal Affairs
- International Court of Justice
- The High Commissionary for Human Rights
- Human Rights Complaints
- Human Rights Council
- Human Rights Committee
- The Committee Against Torture

هنا ترجمة اعلان محكمة بروكسل عن شبكة البصرة والرسائل المؤيدة
http://www.albasrah.net/ar_articles_2006/0706/bdran_030706.htm
وهنا يمكنك ان ترسلوا تأييدكم للمبادرة لوقف المحاكمة مع ارفاق رابط نداء الدورية الى محكمة بروكسل

http://iraq-tribunal@lists.riseup.net


to Brussells Tribunal

With my best regards , I am strongly agrree with your release on 29 june 2006 concerning the illegal trial of president saddam hussain and his colleagues.
Khalil Alsalmani.

Appeal to BRussells Tribunal
  
On behalf of hundreds of Iraqis  who are part of our human rights network, we urge your august Tribunal to continue its noble task in defending the defensless people of Iraq; the legal team that is endeavouring to defend the legitimate president of occupied Iraq President Saddam Hussein and his cabinet ministers and officials.
 
    Some occupation agents, together with traiters will try eloquently to deviate you from your noble goal of defending the Iraqi people and their elected president.  Please do not fall for their demonic rhetoric.  The brutal, cold-blooded murder of Khamees Al-Obaidi Esq. and the fact that his family was threatened not to try and receive his corpses for burial is a clear sign of the beastly powers running occupied Iraq.  President Hussein and many of his colleagues and comrades are in dire need for protection from the guns and drills of the enemies who are already in power -empowered by the occupying forces and their personal vendetta- 
     The illegal, illegitimate, monstrous, demonic occupation of Iraq victimized the people and legal government of Iraq, together with the nations of the governments who tossed aside the International Law. 
Thank you for your gallant stance. Please continue with your efforts.  The suppressed Arab nation and the whole under-dogged third world is monitoring your efforts with hopeful eyes.  We are finally seeing the light at the tunnel of that dark, demonic, unlawful, and illegal occupation.
 
We are raising our voice loudly by asking Brussels Tribunal to declare that this American-Iranian-British setup court is illegal and all its proceedings are violations to the Iraqi law as well as to the international laws and its dignity.
We are asking you to condemn the killing squads, which are created by the governments of Iran, America, Britain and Israel to kill innocent children, youths, women, and elderly people. These killer militias are the ones who killed the attorney Khamis Al Obaidy and other attorneys before him who stood up for the truth and justice.
 Thank you so much for your concern and hard work to emphasis on the rights of the president of the republic of Iraq Mr. Saddam Hussein and all Iraqi POWs.
 
The Iraqi NGOs of Civil Society and Human Rights defenders Network (IRAQNGOSNET)
Baghdad the 3rd of July, 2006 

The BRussell’s Tribunal / People vs. Total War Incorporated.
 
To whom it may concern:
 
I am an Iraqi, and I had left my homeland country 34 years ago. Never went back to my homeland and I'm regretting that now very much. I strongly believe that the injustice and criminal invasion to my homeland Iraq is based on lies, criminal motives, stealing its wealth, unity, cultures, and destroying the Iraqi people progress under its national sincere government by the leadership of president Saddam Hussein and his companions in the Baath Party, to satisfied Israel and Iran by giving them great gift which is the destruction of Iraq and high jacking its government.
 
Now, the criminal invaders led by Bush and company, the warmongers with Blair and his criminal government are trying to humiliate Iraq and the Iraqi people by setting up a jock and illegal court, called as The Iraqi Tribunal Criminal Justice!! Actually it is political tribunal to insult the Iraqi people presenting by their president Mr. Saddam Hussein and his companions, and humiliates the Iraq law as well.
 
I am raising my voice loudly by asking you through the Brussels Tribunal to declare that this American-Iranian-British setup court is illegal and all its proceedings are violations to the Iraqi law as well as to the international laws and its dignity.
 
America is the only one who's strongly reliable and must pay for its violations to international law and criminality. That doesn’t mean Britain and Iran get out of the hook, they are in this ugly practice and must pay for their violation to the international law and crimes as well, but America is their leader and the masterminded.
 
We're asking your majesty to stand up for the rights of Iraqi people, as the President Saddam Hussein the legitimate president of the Republic of Iraq and the Iraqi people, and declare that American-Iranian- British court is illegal and insult to Iraqi people and to the international community as well.
 
We are asking you to condemn the killing squads, which are created by the governments of Iran, America, Britain and Israel to kill innocent children, youths, women, and elderly people. These killer militias are the ones who killed the attorney Khamis Al Obaidy and other attorneys before him who stood up for the truth and justice.
 
Thank you so much for your concern and hard work to emphasis on the rights of the president of the republic of Iraq Mr. Saddam Hussein and his companions.
 
Sincerely,
Faraj Basrawee Artist and Writer
July 1, 2006 

To...Brussells Tribunal
        In the name of thousands of our members and followers, we strongly agree with your release
on  29 June 2006 concerning the illegal trial of President Saddam Hussain and his colleagues .
 
        Abdul-Jabbar Alkubaisy
 President of Iraqi Patroitic coillation ( IPA )
        01 - 07- 2006 
To..Brussells Tribunal.
        The Iraqi masses and the anti-occupation parties forming (The Patriotic, National, Islamic Front)
declare their strong assistance to your resolution on 29 June 2006 concerning the illegal trial of
President Saddam Hussain and his colleagues .
 
       The Patroitic,National,Islamic Front
           01 -07 -2006

Dear Defenders of Justice:
    I urge you to defend the defenceless people of Iraq; the legal team that is endeavouring to defend the legitimately elected president of occupied Iraq President Saddam Hussein and his cabinet ministers and officials.
 
    Some occupation agents, together with traitors will try eloquently to deviate you from your noble goal of defending the Iraqi people and their elected president.  Please do not fall for their demonic rhetoric.  The brutal, cold-blooded murder of Khamees Al-Obaidi Esq. and the fact that his family was threatened not to try and receive his corpses for burial is a clear sign of the beastly powers running occupied Iraq.  President Hussein and many of his colleagues and comrades are in dire need for protection from the guns and drills of the enemies who are already in power -empowered by the occupying forces and their personal vendetta- 
 
    The illegal , illegitimate, monstrous, demonic occupation of Iraq victimized the people and legal government of Iraq, together with the nations of the governments who tossed aside the International Law. 
Thank you for your gallant stance. Please continue with your efforts.  The suppressed Arab nation and the whole under-dogged third world is monitoring your efforts with hopeful eyes.  We are finally seeing the light at the tunnel of that dark, demonic, unlawful, and illegal occupation.
Samira Khatib 

Dear Friends
My best regards
    I am Highly appreciating your statement condemning the killing of the defence team  members and your demand  to transfer the trial of the legitimate presedent of Iraq Mr.  Saddam Hussein abroad, because it is illegal and founded by  the American occupation as mentioned in your statement, In violation of the international standards of fair trial. I would also like to point out that some of Iraqis , living in Europe  cooperating with occupation or prisoners to their  old hatreds  , do not represent any one but  themselves . So please do not pay any attention to the objections by such persons.  The Iraqi people and the national armed resistance, the only legitimate  representative of  the Iraqis, are the final decision maker and the determining factor in Iraq,  not those who have been lost  for long time in Europe.   Accept my  respects .
Salah Almukhtar

ÔÈßÉ ÇáÈÕÑÉ
www.albasrah.net


The Myth of the “Anfal Genocide”

Did Saddam Hussein “Kill the Kurds”?

By David Hungerford (October 2006)

Many crimes against Iraq have been justified by the demonization of Saddam Hussein.  Invasion was justified by claims that he possessed “weapons of mass destruction,” had ties to al-Qaeda, and posed a threat to the territorial United States.

The claims turned out to be lies. There were no “weapons of mass destruction” or programs to develop them. There were no ties to al-Qaeda. He did not threaten U.S. territory.

Those who still support the occupation now say it was justified because Saddam Hussein was a “brutal dictator.” One of the main complaints against him is that “he killed the Kurds.” The usual reference is the Anfal campaign of the Iraqi army from February 23, 1988 to September 6, 1988. It is claimed that Anfal was a campaign of genocide. It can now be said that the “Anfal genocide” never happened. It is another lie.

Ironically it is the second of the illegal U.S.-run “trials” of Mr. Hussein in Baghdad that allows this conclusion. The facts and circumstances of the “trial” can be analyzed without any concession to the legitimacy of the “court.” Nor, since it is illegal, is there any reason to wait for the “court’s” findings before reaching one’s own conclusions. Applicable principles of international law are presented in Appendix A.

Certain facts are not in dispute. The campaign took place in the late stages of the Iran-Iraq war. The Iraqi army fought units of the Iranian army in Northern Iraq. Kurdish guerillas called peshmerga allied with Iran against the government of their own country. In order to suppress the guerillas the Iraqi government displaced large numbers of Kurdish civilians from border areas.

Press reports say the current charge is genocide during Anfal. By any definition the crime of genocide means the extermination of large numbers of people. At first no definite number of civilian fatalities was given in news reports, but in September the “prosecution” was several times reported to say there were 182,000 deaths.

The “trial” on the Anfal charges began on August 21, 2006. There were 13 sessions of the “court” between that date and September 26, at which time it recessed.

In the press reports studied for this analysis no statement or presentation of methodology was reported. No systematic studies were reported. No sworn affidavits were reported. No expert testimony was reported. Evidence of this kind would have been front-page news. It can be concluded that no such evidence was introduced. See Appendix B for the tabulation of articles.

Instead all testimony was anecdotal. As an example, on August 22, the first day of testimony, a witness named Ali Mustapha Hama was heard. He testified to events in the village of Balisan on April 16, 1987. The BBC reported that he said “there was greenish smoke, and minutes later, a smell like rotten apples or garlic. He spoke of a newborn infant who was trying to ‘smell life’, but breathed in the chemicals and died. Many others died too, he added. During cross-examination, defence lawyers asked Mr. Hama how he knew the aircraft were Iraqi, and prompted Hama to say he had helped shelter guerrillas in his village.”

            The death of an infant is a very bad thing. Still, the number of fatalities definitely averred by Mr. Hama is one. He also admitted that there was guerilla activity in his village. Genocide is a large-scale crime against civilians, meant to exterminate an ethnic group. Thus Mr. Hama’s testimony did nothing to establish genocide. Another witness heard the same day was not even reported to have made any definite statement of fatalities.

Between August 22 and September 26 the news reports speak of seventeen witnesses. Definite statements of fatalities came to a total of 43. Some of the fatalities could have overlapped. No attempt to differentiate between civilian and military casualties was reported.

Of the fifteen witnesses three admitted to having been peshmerga guerillas, whereas genocide is a crime against civilians. One of the three former guerillas, Moussa Abdullah Moussa, now lives in Tennessee. Another witness, Katrin Michael, now lives in Virginia.

            One of the witnesses, Mahmoud Hama Aziz, testified on September 9 to 7 fatalities at an unstated location in 1987, prior to Anfal. The New York Times reported the next day that evidence bearing on Mr. Aziz’ testimony had been found in a mass grave discovered in 2004, whereas the “prosecution” claims investigations have been going on since 1991 (see Doebbler, below.) The timing of the “discovery” is so convenient as to raise still more doubts.

Twenty-one of the 43 fatalities including the Balisan incident occurred in 1987, before Anfal. That leaves at most 22 during the Anfal period or at times not stated. The question arises as to what happened to the other 181,978 of the 182,000 claimed victims. At this rate it will take about 689 years to account for the alleged fatalities.

Hence in the first month of proceedings the “prosecution” presented no case at all.

The original trial judge was removed for political reasons on September 20 (see below.) Later sessions descended from farce into chaos. Defense lawyers boycotted the “trial” on orders of Mr. Hussein. Anonymous “witnesses” gave testimony behind a screen; documents were stolen from defense attorney Badia Arif Izzat in the courtroom building, and so forth.

            The prosecution has had all the time and opportunity needed to formulate a case. The alleged events occurred eighteen years ago. Northern Iraq has been out of Baghdad’s control since 1996 when the Clinton administration unilaterally imposed the “no-fly” zones on Iraq.

Nor has there been any lack of investigative expertise and money. The New York Times reported on July 1, 2004 that “The Federal Bureau of Investigation is leading the investigation, along with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and agents from the Justice Department.” The NYT also said on July 20, 2005 that the U.S. had spent more than $35 million on the investigations.

In a case as intensely political as this it must be presumed that at the beginning the “prosecution” will present its case at its strongest. It presented a shambles. Moreover the scale of time and resources behind the “prosecution” removes any argument that a case could be made with more effort. There is only one way that is at all plausible, likely, or straightforward to explain the “prosecution’s” failure to even begin to make any case: there was no “Anfal genocide.”

Other circumstances support the same conclusion.

The charges are not even clear. None of the cited news reports give more than the word “genocide.” The specification of charges might answer some questions. A moderate effort found a document termed a “charging instrument” for the first “trial” of Mr. Hussein, the Dujail case. It is posted at http://www.law.case.edu/saddamtrial/documents/20060515_indictment_trans_saddam_hussein.pdf. Charges for the Anfal “trial” were not posted at the same site, however. Repeated internet searches using “charging instrument” and/or other search terms failed to find the corresponding prosecution statement for the Anfal “trial.” Hence the “prosecution” case is not easily available. It is apparent that the Bush administration and the “prosecution” do not want their case to be known to the public.

            The most basic and routine of defendant’s rights are violated. Defense attorney Curtis Doebbler writes:

The violations of unfair trial are too numerous to mention here, but include almost every provision in article 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights that could be violated at this juncture of the proceedings. . .

The prosecution alleges to have been collecting evidence since at least 1991 — which, of course, could only be true if it were the United States government doing the collecting — and has at least been doing so since April 2003 when dozens of American lawyers and Iraqis who had not lived in Iraq for years were shuttled in to build a case. The defense lawyers, despite requesting visits with their client since December 2003 when he was detained, have to date not been allowed the confidential visits that are necessary to begin to prepare a defense. No visits were allowed with the most senior lawyers until after the trial had started and at each visit American officials exercise the authority to read any materials brought into the visiting room despite the fact that all meetings remain under close audio and visual surveillance. As if this were not enough, evidence has been withheld from the defense lawyers. They have been denied access to investigative hearings; they have been denied prior notice of witnesses, and they are prevented from even visiting the site of the alleged crime.

http://jurist.law.pitt.edu/forumy/2006/04/farce-of-law-trial-of-saddam-hussein.php

If any sound “prosecution” case was possible these abuses would be unnecessary.

            Mr. Hussein’s defense team has been denied physical security despite repeated requests. During the first “trial” three of his attorneys were murdered. During the current “trial” legal assistant Abdel Monem Yassin Hussein was murdered. He was kidnapped on August 29. His body was found five days later. The murders of defense personnel argue further against the possibility of any “prosecution” case.

            The blatantly political nature of the “trial” was exposed again on September 20, when puppet Iraqi “prime minister” Nuri al-Maliki removed judge Abdullah al-Amiri from the case. The reason for this outrageous abuse was reported by the New York Times on September 15 as follows:

One witness, a Kurdish farmer, testified that in 1988 he had pleaded with Mr. Hussein for the life of his wife and seven young children. He said a furious Mr. Hussein shouted, “Shut up and get out.”

In court, Mr. Hussein jumped up to defend himself.

“Why did he try to see Saddam Hussein?” he asked the judge, referring to himself in the third person, as is his habit in court. “Wasn’t Saddam a dictator and an enemy to the Kurdish people, as they say?”

The judge replied: “I will answer you: you are not a dictator. Not a dictator,” he repeated. “You were not a dictator.”

Mr. Hussein, smiling, replied, “Thank you.”

 

            Five days later the judge was removed. If the alleged events of 1988 had really occurred it is extremely unlikely that the puppet “government” would again have discredited itself and the “trial” with this shameless interference.

Even more extraordinarily, an AP report on August 21 said that “the trial does not deal with the most notorious gassing — the March 1988 attack on Halabja that killed an estimated 5,000 Kurds. That incident will be part of a separate investigation by the Iraqi High Tribunal.”  The report did not say why Halabja is to be treated separately.

The Halabja incident is the biggest thing in the “genocide” case. The “prosecution” has dismembered its own case. It is trying to carry water by knocking the bottom out of its own bucket. The omission strongly suggests that there is no more to the Halabja story than there is to the “Anfal genocide.”

*   *   *

The most serious doubts arise repeatedly that any valid case against Mr. Hussein can be made. Just as in the notorious “Downing Street Memo” minutes of a July, 2002 meeting of the British cabinet, "the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy." 

            In the United States the burden of proof is on the prosecution to prove its case “beyond reasonable doubt.” The defects of the “prosecution’s” case are so great as to constitute overwhelming doubt. There is no reason at all to believe that genocide was committed in the Anfal campaign. Only one conclusion can be drawn: the “Anfal genocide” never happened.

*   *   *

In all of the years of its war with Iraq U.S. imperialism has had only one significant political success: the demonization of Saddam Hussein. The “brutal, corrupt dictator” line is heard across the political spectrum. Investigation would seem unnecessary.

            One result is that to a great degree antiwar opinion sees the war in Iraq as no more than a war for oil. It is insufficient to stop without looking at Iraq, but that is what almost always happens.

Firstly, the oil already belongs to Iraq. From its side the war has always been a war for sovereignty, i.e., its rights of national self-determination. Since occupation it has also become a war for independence.

“War for oil” also raises further questions. There are many ways to get oil. War is the worst way to get it. The question is why U.S. imperialism has resorted to war.  There are many countries that have oil. The United Arab Emirates has almost as much oil as Iraq but nothing is ever heard about it. The question is why Iraq is different.

Again the answer is that modern pre-occupation Iraq always fully asserted its rights of sovereignty. The war is Iraq is an unjust war for oil versus a just war for sovereignty and independence.

            The highest questions of any war are questions of historical content and direction, questions of just and unjust causes. Antiwar opinion is most of the time not even aware of these questions. More than anything else it is the demonization of Saddam Hussein that denies the masses a full understanding of the war.

The revolutionary significance of Iraq’s great struggle disappears. The linkage of the struggle in Iraq to that of Palestine disappears. Too often the need to support the just and heroic Iraqi resistance becomes lost; too often the necessity to immediately demand unconditional withdrawal of all foreign forces as objectively the only way to end the war becomes lost.

Very little about Iraq and nothing at all about Saddam Hussein should ever be accepted on the basis of authority. There are no such authorities in the U.S. government. There are no such authorities in the U.S. media. There are no such academic authorities. There are no such authorities in the antiwar movement. Throw away all “authoritative” ideas about Saddam Hussein!

There are only determinations: sound methods, sound concepts, facts and logic, history. On method one can, for instance, look at the Iraqi side directly. Daily accounts of resistance activities are posted in English at http://www.albasrah.net/pages/mod.php?header=res1&mod=gis&rep=rep. Political statements of the Iraqi Baath Arab Socialist Party and pre-occupation speeches of President Saddam Hussein are posted at http://www.al-moharer.net/qiwa_shabiya/qiwa.html.

            The war will end and can only end in the defeat of imperialism and its expulsion from the Persian Gulf. The people of Iraq are stronger than imperialism. Though the whole world shatter, and well it may, in the end the people of Iraq will win.

Victory to Iraq!

Down With Imperialism! 

—October 2006 

Appendix A: The “trial” Violates International Law

 

1. The invasion of Iraq is a violation of international law.

 

Excerpt from “A Farce of Law: The Trial of Saddam Hussein” by Curtis F. Doebbler

 

The glaring illegalities of the current process begin with illegal origins. The invasion and occupation of Iraq is widely understood to be illegal. On 5 March 2003, three of the five members of UN Security Council and Germany, which was then a non-permanent member, unambiguously declared that a US-led invasion without further Security Council authorization would violate international law. On 16 September 2004, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan reiterated what was by then obvious to almost every international lawyer, that the invasion and occupation of Iraq is illegal. In fact, this is a textbook case of illegal aggression in violation of the prohibition of the use of force by one country against another found in article 2(4) of the Charter of the United Nations and under customary international law.

 

The Nuremberg Tribunal described such illegal aggression as “essentially an evil thing. Its consequences are not confined to the belligerent states alone, but affect the whole world. To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.”

 

http://jurist.law.pitt.edu/forumy/2006/04/farce-of-law-trial-of-saddam-hussein.php

 

Curtis Doebbler is an American member of Saddam Hussein’s legal defense team and a professor of law at An-Najah National University on the Palestinian West Bank

 

2. The “trial” of Saddam Hussein violates provisions of international law to which the United States is signatory.

 

Excerpts from “Iraq and the Laws of War” by Professor Francis A. Boyle

 

On 19 March 2003 President Bush Jr. commenced his criminal war against Iraq by ordering a so-called decapitation strike against the President of Iraq in violation of a 48-hour ultimatum he had given publicly to the Iraqi President and his sons to leave the country. This duplicitous behavior violated the customary international laws of war set forth in the 1907 Hague Convention on the Opening of Hostilities to which the United States is still a contracting party, as evidenced by paragraphs 20, 21, 22, and 23 of U.S. Army Field Manual 27-10 (1956).

. . .

This brings the analysis to the so-called Constitution of Iraq that was allegedly drafted by the puppet Interim Government of Iraq under the impetus of the United States government. Article 43 of the 1907 Hague Regulations on land warfare flatly prohibits the change in a basic law such as a state’s Constitution during the course of a belligerent occupation: “The authority of the legitimate power having in fact passed into the hands of the occupant, the latter shall take all the measures in his power to restore, and ensure as far as possible, public order and safety, while respecting, unless absolutely prevented, the laws in force in the country.” This exact same prohibition has been expressly incorporated in haec verba into paragraph 363 of U.S. Army Field Manual 27-10 (1956).

 

http://www.countercurrents.org/iraq-boyle221205.htm

 

Francis A. Boyle is Professor of Law at the University of Illinois.

 

Appendix B: Tabulation of News Reports

 

Report Dt

Reporter

News Org

Session

Witness

Incident

Location

Fatalities

Notes

08/21/06

Rageh

AP

08/21/06

none

 

 

 

opening session

08/22/06

 

BBC

08/22/06

Ali Mostafa Hama

04/16/87

Balisan

1

an infant died; witness helped shelter guerillas

08/22/06

 

BBC

08/22/06

Najiba Khider Ahmed

04/16/87

Sheik Wasan

 

no fatalities mentioned

08/23/06

 

AP

08/23/06

Badriya Said Khider

04/16/87

Balisan

9

relatives

08/23/06

 

AP

08/23/06

Adiba Oula Bayez

04/16/87

Balisan

4

kept in same room

08/23/06

 

AP

08/23/06

Moussa Abdullah Moussa

Aug. 1988

Ikmala

3

peshmerga; NYT of 8/24 says he now lives in TN

08/24/06

Cave

NYT

08/24/06

Bahiya Mustafa Mahmood

04/16/87

Balisan

 

gassed

09/12/06

Zielbauer

NYT

09/11/06

Katrin Michael

unstated

unstated

 

saw bombs dropped, blistering; now lives in VA

09/12/06

Zielbauer

NYT

09/11/06

Ahmed Abdel Rahman Ahmed

09/01/87

unstated

 

village razed

09/12/06

 

Al Jazeera

09/11/06

Abdul Hassan Ghafour

02/01/88

near Sulaimaniya

3

mother, 2 sisters died -  ID’s found in mass grave

09/12/06

 

Al Jazeera

09/12/06

Mahmoud Hama Aziz

1987, ?

unstated

7

2 incidents; brother was in fighting; others in mass grave in 2004

09/13/06

Fickling

Guardian

09/12/06

 

 

 

 

mass grave “recently discovered” (Aziz)

09/13/06

Fickling

Guardian

09/13/06

 

 

 

 

Prosecutor accuses judge al-Amiri of bias

09/15/06

Zielbauer

NYT

09/14/06

unnamed farmer

unstated

unstated

unstated

Judge” you are not a dictator”

09/18/06

 

Xinhua

09/18/06

 

 

 

 

trial resumes

09/19/06

Schemm

AFP

09/19/06

Rauf Faraj Abdallah

unstated

Qaram Pasha

1

wife gave birth, baby died; 3 days of fighting (AP)

09/19/06

Schemm

AFP

09/19/06

Iskander Mahmouod Abdel Rahman

unstated

unstated

 

guerilla; gassed; hospitalized in Iran

09/19/06

Schemm

AFP

09/19/06

Obeid Mahmud Mohammed

unstated

unstated

7

wife, six children died

09/20/06

 

AP

09/19/06

Abdallah Tawfiq

unstated

unstated

unstated

former guerilla, treated in Netherlands

09/20/06

Oppel

NYT

09/20/06

 

 

 

 

al-Amiri removed on orders of al-Maliki, defense lawyers walk out

09/21/06

Oppel

NYT

09/21/06

 

 

 

 

al-Uraibi, new judge, throws Saddam out of court

09/26/06

 

AP

09/26/06

Thameena Hameed Nouri

unstated

unstated

3

Daughter Galala died in detention

09/26/06

 

AP

09/26/06

Aasi Mustafa Ahmed

unstated

unstated

5

Wife and 4 children missing, never found.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TOTALS

 

 

13 sessions

17 witnesses

at most 13

 

43

 


Proceedings and Verdict in the show trial of Mr. Hussain are illegal. (05 Nov 2006)

The BRussells Tribunal has already alerted World public opinion on June 29 that the proceedings against Mr. Hussain should be halted. We raised fundamental legal questions about the detention and trial of Mr. Hussain in light of existing rules of the laws and customs of war (humanitarian law), and the laws established under the international system of human rights. These bodies of law are binding on all judicial actions.  

 

We affirm that neither the Special Tribunal nor its verdict issued today are legal or could serve the cause of peace and justice. We ask all people who believe in peace and justice to condemn the US illegal occupation and illegal actions, including Mr Hussain’s trial.

We notice that most Human Right Organisations have also condemned the proceedings of the trial and today’s verdict. Amnesty International’s Malcolm Smart declared: “Obviously we deplore the verdict of the death penalty against Saddam and one of his co-accused. We don't consider it was a fair process. The court was not impartial. There were not adequate steps taken to protect the security of defence lawyers and witnesses... “

We also notice the double standards of the brutal occupation forces and its puppet government. With rivers of blood flowing on the streets of Baghdad, the whole Saddam trial looks meaningless! It does not mark the prevailing of justice nor the rule of law!

There are Iraqi political figures in power, who are linked to the sectarian killing and the death squads, when will they be held accountable?

 

We hope that the US and it’s puppet government come to their senses and stop all proceedings against Mr. Hussain, cancel the verdict, stop the illegal occupation of Iraq, get the foreign troops out, and leave Iraq to the Iraqis.

 

  • Some relevant questions and answers

Do you think President Saddam's trial must be removed outside Iraq?

Because the US-led invasion of Iraq that led to the dissolution of the government of President Saddam Hussein was illegal under international law, the subsequent trial of President Hussein, indeed the Iraqi Special Tribunal as a whole, is consequently illegal and null and void. Under customary international law, states have an obligation not to recognize as legal the consequences of illegal acts. Given that the 2003 invasion and subsequent occupation was a crime against peace and an aggression against Iraqi sovereignty, any international tribunal constituted or called for by occupying powers would be a further offence against the protected sovereignty of Iraq as a recognized member state of the United Nations. It is clear that the conditions under which this illegal trial has been conducted additionally warrant annulling its verdict, but the real issue is the sovereignty of Iraq which can only be restored with the unconditional end of the occupation.

Saddam is a prisoner of war. He was not judged by the US as such. Besides, the UNSC didn’t constitute a special International Tribunal. So the only legal possibility to judge a president of Iraq is before an Iraqi tribunal after the liberation of Iraq.

Why do you think the Iraqi authorities are so adamant not to move the trial outside Iraq? 

These so-called Iraqi authorities are US proxies and have a direct interest in killing President Hussein in order to protect their positions and to attempt to break the national popular resistance by denying it a symbolic focus in the office of the presidency. They are adamant not to take the trial outside of Iraq because they know that any outside trial could not impose the death penalty and would be bound by international fair trial standards, stipulations they must avoid if they are to protect their positions and ensure a swift and unjust execution. Moving the tribunal outside Iraq does not change the illegality of the tribunal. It would only assure the security of the defence lawyers. Many were assassinated and others were threatened and prevented from doing their work

Do you think the trial is based on political revenge? 

Clearly there is a strong element of political revenge, illustrated in the fact that the Dujail trial was essentially brought by Al-Dawa Party which is in government because of the US-led invasion. On the other hand, the trial has significance beyond political revenge because it is an attempt to establish via a veneer of law and the misuse of the judiciary a permanent character to an illegal takeover by forces which came in on the back of American tanks. Ultimately it is a hijacking of Iraqi popular sovereignty: an attempted coup d'etat backed by US military power and three years of unbridled aggression against the Iraqi people who reject as puppets and stooges these same sectarian forces who entered Iraq after the 2003 invasion. The endurance of the Iraqi people in the face of horrendous aggression is now bringing this project to an end, though likely the execution of President Saddam Hussein will be pushed through. The execution itself, given that the political project has failed and could not but fail, will be pure political revenge. The US is using the tribunal as a political instrument. Satisfying the revenge of some is one purpose. 

Do you think the trial is influenced by Iran, giving the fact that all Shia and Kurd political parties in power now are affiliated with Iran? 

It is certain Iran and the pro Iranians in Iraq are against Saddam, but it’s the US who directs the tribunal. 

Should the Saddam defence team appeal the sentence and why? 

That is a matter for them. As lawyers they will act in the best interest of their client, which includes protecting his life and person, especially from arbitrary detention or execution. It is clear from their statements over many months that they regard, and rightly so, the Iraqi Special Tribunal as illegal, biased and politically manipulated. Recently the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, which has a defined legal mandate, agreed with them. This opinion ruling is significant, though it is unclear which actors which have courage to act upon it. The bulk of legal experts following the trial — at least the independent ones — believe the trial to be a grave mockery of law and an alarming precedent. 

Dirk Adriaensens  (member of the BRussells Tribunal Executive Committee). 

Abdul Ilah Al Bayaty (member of the BRussells Tribunal Advisory Committee).

Ian Douglas (member of the BRussells Tribunal Advisory Committee).


The First panel of the Iraqi High Criminal Court 

Sub. / Request for Incrimination and Verdict Decisions 

Immediately after the verdict in case # (1/criminal/2005) was announced on November 5,2006, the Defense Committee, in addition to its other colleagues, the attorneys of the other convicted persons, submitted written requests to the Court through the court's clerk and also to the American (side), who were present there in order to get copies of the incrimination and verdict decisions.  The clerk returned the requests back to the lawyers stating that the court had refused to receive them and that the court will provide the defense attorneys with such copies after five days. 

Once again, the Court is behaving unlawfully and in an unfair manner with the defense and the clients.  It is depriving them from their right to have adequate time to prepare their appeal to the Cassation Panel within the thirty days period as provided by the Court's law.  The days of this delay are given credit as part of the time accorded to submit an appeal and the defense cannot prepare the statement of appeal without being given an opportunity to study and review the incrimination decision, which should include the legal justifications of the verdict.  This is especially important in the light of the fact that the court has not read out the incrimination decision in a public session, which constitutes another legal violation in the record of the grave violations to both national and international laws, which made this court very far from the standards of a fair trial, while in the same time, its legality and legitimacy remained a subject to suspension and doubt of all legal institutions and U.N. organization because it is a trial that was conducted under occupation. 

The Defense Committee holds the Court responsible for depriving the defense and the clients of their right to have adequate time.  The Defense Committee asks for certified copies of the incrimination and verdict decisions to be sent for it by e-mail in order to save time and due to security difficulties, which face the Defense Committee inside the court's compound. 

Khalil Dolaimi

Wadoud Fawzi

Bader Al bandar

Ramsey Clark

Mohammed Munib

Dr.Ahmed Siddiq

Ziyad Najdawi

Issam Ghazawi

Suliman Jobori

Javeer Savadera  


DEFENSE COMMITTEE for PRESIDENT SADDAM HUSSEIN and his COMRADES in IRAQ 

"PRESS RELEASE" 

Baghdad 7 November 2006  

Once again, the so-called Iraqi High Criminal Court, tries to ultimately kill and put a final end to the right of defense with its continued procrastination and intentional reluctance to provide the Defense Committee with a full transcript copy of the judgment decision, although we have been requesting this copy since the end of the last session and till this day.

Depriving the defense from having a copy of the verdict decision cannot be viewed, except as a violation to the right of defense.  The time that has passed from the moment of pronouncing the judgment until this moment, is given credit, as is part of the period accorded for the defense to submit its cassation request (contest).  The defense cannot prepare a justified cassation request to contest the judgment unless it has the text and the provisions of the judgment decision.

In another related matter, although more than 48 hours passed since the show of the session of pronouncing the judgment, the American authorities have not yet secured the return of the Defense lawyers to Amman.  It should be noted that these authorities have promised to secure our return no later than Monday 6 November 2006, at the utmost.  The defense team members remained on the alert and under a kind of confinement inside the Green Zone since Monday while several experts' observers and journalists who attended the last session have been evacuatedThe Defense Committee stresses that delaying the return of its members has only one sole aim and that is to gain time, in order to obstruct the lawyers' efforts to get access to the media and to demoralize them as they are about to be absolutely dedicated to draft the cassation statement and to focus on contacting the concerned international organizations in their efforts to prevent the implementation of the unjust execution judgment. 

For the Defense Committee

Khalil Dolaimi


STOP THE EXECUTIONS
The Illegality of the Executions of Mr Barzan Ibrahim Al-Tikriti and Judge Awad Al-Bandar

(Curtis Doebbler) 

Washington, DC, 8 January 2007

Your urgent attention is respectfully drawn to the imminent execution of Mr. Barzan Tikriti and Judge Awwad Bandar. The Iraqi authorities with the cooperation of the United States government plan to execute both of these men after having provided them an unfair trial before the extraordinary Iraqi Special Tribunal (IST).

The trial of these two men before the IST has been found to be unfair by every independent international legal expert reviewing the matter. These experts include the UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judge and lawyers, Professor Leandro Despouy; the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention—who has been authorized by all UN member states to make such determinations; as well as international human rights NGOs, including Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, Transitional Justice, and the Friends’ Service.

As you are aware the United States and Iraqi government have already executed former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein after the same unfair trial on the an important Sunni Muslim holy day and in a disgraceful manner that has enraged Sunni Muslims. This execution has already further inflamed violence in Iraq with several Sunni groups who had been engaged in negotiations with the government withdrawing and pledging to avenge the death of the former Iraqi leader.

The executions of these two men will further infuriate and insult the values of all Muslims and Arabs. They will incontrovertibly show the world that the United States and Iraq is will to summarily and arbitrarily execute individuals after unfair trials. More unfortunately it will send a clear indication to Iraqis and Arab and Muslims everywhere, that the international community is not willing to protect their rights.

You are urgently requested to make a public statement and formal diplomatic representations to the governments of Iraq and the United States urging them not to carry out the executions and to ensure that the defendants are provided fair re-trials.

Respectful regards,

Curtis F.J. Doebbler
Tel: +39-338-538-3612 or +39-041-937664 or +41-78-661-0208

 STOP THE EXECUTIONS
The Illegality of the Executions of Mr Barzan Ibrahim Al-Tikriti and Judge Awad Al-Bandar

 

The imminent executions of Mr Barzan Ibrahim Al-Tikriti and Judge Awad Al-Bandar are illegal and violate international law, particularly international human rights law for the following reasons: 

1. The Iraqi Special Tribunal (IST) is illegal

2. The IST’s judgment and executions violate Iraqi law

3. The IST’s judgment and the executions violate international human rights law

 

ANY EFFORTS TO BRING THE ILLEGALITY OF THE IMMINENT EXECUTIONS OF MR TIKRITI AND JUDGE BANDAR TO THE ATTENTION OF GOVERNMENT LEADERS TO TRY TO STOP THESE EXECUTIONS IS WELCOMED.

THE MORE PEOPLE THAT TELL THEIR GOVERNMENTS TO HALT THESE ILLEGAL EXECUTIONS, THE MORE CHANCE WE HAVE OF PREVENTING THESE SERIOUS VIOLATIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS.

Summary of Some of the Most Important Violations of Fair Trial in Dujail Proceedings 

1.       Right to be judged by an independent and impartial tribunal (GCIII, art. 84(2) and ICCPR, art. 14(1) and ADRDM, art. XVIII)

2.      Right to be informed of charges (GCIII, art. 104 and ICCPR, art. 14(3)(a))

3.      Right to adequate facilities and time to prepare defense [equality of arms](GCIII, art. 99 and 105 and ICCPR, art. 14(3)(b))

4.      Right to lawyer (GCIII, art. 99 and 105 and ICCPR, art. 14(3)(d))

5.       Right to public trial and judgment, (ICCPR, art. 14)

6.      Tribunal must be established in accordance with law (ICCPR, art. 14(1), GCIV, art. 54 and 64)

7.      Right to presumption of innocence (ICCPR, art. 14(2))

8.      Right to trial without delay (ICCPR, art. 14(3)(c))

9.      Right to examine witnesses and to call witnesses under same conditions as prosecution (ICCPR, art. 14(3)(e))

10.   Right of appeal (ICCPR, art. 14(3)(5))

11.   Right to communicate with lawyer of own choosing (ICCPR, art. 14(3)(b))

12.   Right to transmit correspondence (ICCPR, art. 17 and 19 and ADRDM, art. X)

 

Treaties: (1) (Third Geneva) Convention Relating to the Treatment of Prisoners of War (GCIII) [legally binding on US], (2) International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) [Legally binding on US and continues to apply in Iraq as no US derogation], (3) American Declaration on the Rights and Duties of Man (ADRDM) [This has been found by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to reflect the customary international law that is legally binding on the US].

Compiled by Dr Curtis F J Doebbler, international human rights lawyer and attorney to President Saddam Hussein.