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Saddam Dujail verdict could be delayed again: Iraqi prosecutor

[JURIST] Jaafar al-Mussawi, chief prosecutor in the trial [BBC timeline] of Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] for crimes against humanity, said Sunday that the trial verdict could once again be delayed. The Iraqi High Tribunal [JURIST news archive] had postponed the original October 16 verdict [JURIST report] until at least November 5, but could now delay the announcement of the verdict for an additional two weeks. The chief prosecutor told AFP that the court needed additional time to review evidence and complete its findings. AFP has more.

Prosecutors sought the death penalty for Hussein [JURIST report] in June for allegedly killing, torturing and illegally detaining Dujail residents, including 148 Shiites [JURIST report]. Khalil al-Dulaimi, chief defense lawyer for Hussein, meanwhile warned against the execution of Hussein [AP report] Sunday, citing the potential reaction of escalating violence and civil war in Iraq. His comments echoed others [JURIST report] made earlier in the month by fellow Saddam defense team member Ramsey Clark, a former US Attorney General, who predicted that the execution of the former Iraqi dictator would lead to "catastrophic violence" and "total, unmitigated chaos." Also Sunday, Dulaimi announced the ending of a month-long boycott [JURIST news archive] of Hussein's genocide trial, which resumes on Monday. Hussein is facing genocide charges [JURIST news archive; BBC timeline] for allegedly killing 100,000 Kurds during the so-called "Anfal" campaigns [HRW backgrounder] in the late 1980s.

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