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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)


Iraqi Court Gives 'Chemical Ali' Third Death Sentence

By VOA News
02 March 2009

An Iraqi court has given a third death sentence to Saddam Hussein's cousin, Hassan al-Majid, also known as "Chemical Ali" for his role in the gassing of Iraqi Kurds.

The court sentenced Majid to hang after convicting him of premeditated murder in connection to the 1999 crackdown on Shi'ite protests in the city of Najaf and in the poor Baghdad neighborhood now known as Sadr City.

The court also acquitted former Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz of the same charges. It is the first verdict in four separate trials of Aziz, who also served as Saddam's deputy prime minister and was the regime's main spokesman to the outside world.

Aziz, Majid and 12 other ex-officials were put on trial for the suppression of Shi'ite protests after the assassination of a leading Shi'ite cleric, Grand Ayatollah Mohammed Sadeq al-Sadr.

Majid has already been sentenced to death twice in separate trials, once for the 1980s anti-Kurd military campaign known as "Anfal," in which poison gas was used, and once for the crackdown on a Shi'ite uprising following the 1991 Gulf War.

Majid's execution has been delayed repeatedly.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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