Saddam Hussein accused the chief judge in his genocide trial on Monday of violating the law by appointing defense attorneys against his wishes after the ex-president's own lawyer walked out of the proceedings.
Khalil al-Dulaimi stormed out of the courtroom shortly after he ended a monthlong boycott of the trial in which Saddam and six others are charged for their alleged roles in Operation Anfal, a crackdown against Iraqi Kurds in the late 1980s.
Al-Dulaimi submitted a dozen motions, including one to allow foreign lawyers to attend the trial without permission of the court.
But chief judge Mohammed Oreibi al-Khalifa denied most of them, prompting the defense lawyer to announce that "I'm withdrawing" from the trial.
"I allow you to withdraw. Go ahead," the judge responded.
Al-Khalifa rebuked al-Dulaimi for insisting on referring to Saddam as president of Iraq.
"There is only one president here -- it's me, the court's president," the judge said.
Al-Dulaimi replied there was nothing in Iraqi law to bar him from using the title of "the legitimate president of Iraq."
After his lawyer left the courtroom, Saddam complained that the court had appointed replacement lawyers for him "despite our wish to be represented by our own attorneys."
He accused the court of violating the law, which he said stipulated that court-appointed attorneys are provided only for defendants who cannot afford counsel.
Despite the heated exchanges, the court heard testimony from four Kurdish witnesses who recounted the horrors of alleged chemical attacks during the Anfal crackdown.
Saddam and one another defendant, his cousin "Chemical Ali" al-Majid, are charged with genocide in the Anfal case. The other defendants are accused of crimes against humanity and war crimes. All of them could be sentenced to death by hanging if convicted.
Saddam is expected to hear the verdict on Nov. 5 in the first trial against him stemming from the deaths of nearly 150 Shiite Muslims from the town of Dujail following a 1982 assassination attempt against him.
FRENCH AID: Paris has sent a navy ship and aircraft from Reunion Island with some pollution control equipment, but rough seas are spreading the oil spill The operator of a Japanese bulk carrier which ran aground off Mauritius in the Indian Ocean yesterday apologized for a major oil spill, which officials and environmentalists say is creating an ecological disaster, as police prepared to board the ship. The MV Wakashio, operated by Mitsui OSK Lines, struck the reef on Mauritius’ southeast coast on July 25. “We apologize profusely and deeply for the great trouble we have caused,” Mitsui OSK Lines executive vice president Akihiko Ono said at a news conference in Tokyo. The company would “do everything in their power to resolve the issue,” he said. At least 1,000 tonnes of
They stand as eyesores to most passers-by and potential public health risks to authorities, decaying buildings wrapped in tangles of exposed wire, studded with protruding leaky plastic pipes, vegetation billowing from cracks and terraces where particulates from polluted air have accumulated over time. With skyscrapers and ultramodern developments on every side, some of these “nail houses” are also sitting on land worth millions of dollars in Shenzhen’s inferno of a property market, where new-unit and second-hand home prices rival London. In battles over land and development, the nail house phenomenon has become widespread throughout China over the past two decades, with owners
An Italian alpine resort on Friday remained on high alert over fears that a vast chunk of a glacier on the slopes of the Mont Blanc massif could plummet in high temperatures. “No one gets through! No cars, bikes or pedestrians,” was the message at a checkpoint where an automatic barrier and two guards blocked the small road snaking up into a lush valley below the Planpincieux glacier, near the town of Courmayeur and the Italian-French border. The blockade has largely been greeted with contempt by the locals, one of whom said: “It’s a joke.” The huge ice block measuring around 500,000 cubic
The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Hong Kong (FCC) yesterday said that reporters in the territory were experiencing “highly unusual” visas problems, and called on the US and China to stop using the media as a political weapon. Journalists have been caught up in US-China tensions, with both sides placing limits or expelling reporters from their territories in the past few months. Now the spat is filtering into Hong Kong, a regional press hub nominally in charge of its own immigration policies. The FCC said in a statement that multiple media firms had reported delays getting visas in recent months. “The delays have affected journalists