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Iraqi Justice Minister accuses US of stalling Saddam trial

[JURIST] Abdel Hussein Shandal, Iraq's Sunni justice minister, accused the US on Tuesday of trying to delay Iraqi efforts to interrogate Saddam Hussein. While he said he expects Saddam's trial for war crimes [JURIST news archive] to be over by the end of the year [AHN report], he also said the US has been hampering efforts to question him and that "it seems there are lots of secrets they want to hide" [Aljazeera report]. US officials had no comment about his remarks, but have previously warned against rushing the trial and letting it interfere with the constitutional process. AP has more.

4:25 PM ET - Hours after Shandal's comments, Saddam Hussein legal advisers Giovanni di Stefano criticized the Justice Minister from commenting on the trial, stating that "the Iraqi government should desist from making political statements." Di Stefano also repeated the defense call for the trial to be held in a safe country like Sweden. AP has more.

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