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Muhammad Hamza al-Zubaydi

Muhammad Hamza al-Zubaydi [Muhammad Hamza al-Zubaidi] is a former Prime Minister and former Deputy Prime Minister. Known as Saddam's "Shi'a thug", he violently suppressed the 1991 Shi'a uprisings after the Gulf War with tens of thousands killed. He was featured in Iraqi news video kicking and beating captured Shi'a dissidents. He presided over the destruction of the southern marshes in 1992-98, as seen in the videotaped instructions in the field of the Iraqi prime minister, Muhammad Hamza al-Zubaidi, to army generals to "wipe-out" specific Marsh Arab tribes.

In December 1997 Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Muhammad Hamza al-Zubaydi arrived at El-Khartoum within his tour of Arab countries as Saddam Hussein's special envoy on an official visit to Sudan.

As Commander of Central Euphrates Region from 1998 to 2000, Muhammad Hamza continued repressing Shi'a political-religious activities and unrest. The assassination of the Grand Ayatollah Al-Sadr and two of his sons in the Shiite center of Al-Najaf late In February 1999 was a serious indication of deteriorating relations between Iraqi Shiites and the Baghdad government. The Special Republican Guards and the Special Security Organizations stepped up their attacks against Shiites in the south of Iraq, especially in Nassiriya, Kufa, and Najaf, as well as in Baghdad itself. And these attacks led to numerous deaths. Al-Sadr had defied Saddam's authority over the previous few months; at the same time, the regime increased measures to harass him and his followers throughout Iraq. Although Baghdad sent a team under the command of Muhammad Hamza Al-Zubaidi to the Mosque in Kufa to prevent the faithful from conducting their prayers under the direction of Al-Sadr, Al-Sadr still insisted on leading the prayers and delivering the Friday sermon on 12 February.

He was relieved in May 2001 of positions as Deputy Prime Minister and member of the Ba'ath Party Regional Command.

Muhammad Hazmaq al Zubaydi was taken into custody on April 21, 2003, by Coalition forces.

The United States confirmed on December 5, 2005, that Muhammad Hamza al-Zubaydi had died at a U.S. military hospital in Iraq on December 2, 2005 at age 67.




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