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Dear Peter & List, The issue of putting Saddam on trial is indeed a very complicated one. The article referred to by Muhammad attempts to portray the trial of Saddam in Iraq as a step towards returning sovereignty to the people of Iraq. Forget about the fact that Iraq remains under occupation; forget the Geneva conventions; forget that the attack on Iraq was in itself a violation of international law and a war crime; forget that only a sovereign state can have a sovereign legal system... How can a state be sovereign under occupation?? > it is patronising to argue that the Iraqi authorities cannot dispense justice< Why wasn’t the same argument used in the former Yugoslavia? Aren’t the Yugoslavs able to dispense justice in the same way? Why was Milosovic then taken to the Hague for a special trial instead of being tried by his own people?? Perhaps the distingushed QC can explain that issue.. To start with, the Special Tribunal established in Iraq a few days before the announcement of the arrest of Saddam was given one mandate only: to try elements of the former regime for crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide. I do not want to go into speculations on whether or not Saddam was already in custody when the tribunal was established, for this is the not the place for it. It is enough to say that it is too good to be a coincidence.. There is an almost unanimous agreement among legal experts all over the world that the tribunal has no legitimacy because it was established by the IGC which was appointed by the Occupation force after an illegal aggression. It therefore does NOT represent the people of Iraq, but the will of the occupiers. There is also another problem with that tribunal. Under which laws are Saddam and his supporters going to be tried? We know that the CPA had suspended Iraq’s laws, and imposed new laws and regulations (again in violation of international law). According to which laws is Saddam going to be tried? If an Iraqi court is to try Saddam for the above crimes, then it should deal with ALL such crimes committed against the people of Iraq, regardless of who committed them. That means that the court will have to try US, British and other leaders for their complicity in Iraq’s affairs and crimes committed against Iraqis since 1958; it should deal with crimes committed by Kurdish separatist groups in Iraq; it should deal with Turkish crimes committed inside Iraq; it should deal with crimes committed by SCIRI, Da’wa party, communists and all other parties, including the Ba’th, against Iraqis; it should deal with the genocidal sanctions imposed against Iraq; it should deal with the crimes committed against Iraq under the illegal no-fly zone regime; it should deal with the latest illegal aggression against Iraq; it should deal with Saudi and Kuwaiti complicity in the Iran war; it should demand compensations for Iraqis for all their losses caused by the bombings and attacks.. it should.. it should.. The list is very long.. Is the tribunal going to do that? Certainly not, because it was not established to bring justice to Iraqis, but to cover up the bigger crimes. And that is why an international tribunal is not suitable, because then the other and bigger crimes against Iraqis will be exposed. And because if the UN establishes such a tribunal, the US will not be able to decide alone how the trial is conducted. We don’t want the world to know the whole truth, now do we?? One final issue. If the supporters of trying Saddam in Iraq insist that Iraqi law is still valid, then may I remind them that law 734 of 1987 stipulates that any Iraqi or foreigner living in Iraq, who deals with a foreign power, will face the death penalty. If Iraqi law is to be applied, then all members of the IGC should be tried for treason.. How about that?? HZ __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree _______________________________________________ Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-discuss To contact the list manager, email email@example.com All postings are archived on CASI's website: http://www.casi.org.uk