US says no change to Saddam trial date

US says no change to Saddam trial date

[JURIST] US State Department [official website] spokesman Sean McCormack [official profile] said Friday that the date for the start of the trial of Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] will not be changed from October 19, despite reports from a British official earlier this week that the trial might be postponed [JURIST report] due to logistical issues, such as bullet-proof screen installations and the creation of a witness protection program. McCormack said, "The Iraqis have said the trial is scheduled to begin on Oct 19th and it's my understanding that the date still stands." McCormack also stressed that "this is an Iraqi process" and the US is only providing technical and other assistance for the trial. Hussein is on trial for the 1992 massacre of 143 Shiites in Dujail [JURIST report] after an assassination attempt against him. AFP has more.