Custody of Saddam Hussein given to Iraq, to be executed 'today or tomorrow'

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Friday, December 29, 2006

Saddam Hussein
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Saddam Hussein is reported by BBC to be already executed, at around 6:05 Baghdad time today.

10:22PM EST, CBS broke into Friday night coverage to report Saddam was executed.

As of 10:00PM EST, the nation of Iraq was awaiting word of Saddam's execution.

The custody of Saddam Hussein has been turned over to the Iraqi government and a judge, who is to be present during the execution of the former Iraqi dictator, says that the execution will take place no later than Saturday.

One of Nouri al-Maliki's advisers has stated that the execution will be carried out by 6 a.m. on Saturday (10 p.m. Friday EST).

"A few minutes ago we received correspondence from the Americans saying that President Saddam Hussein is no longer under the control of United States forces," said a statement by Hussein's lawyers.

At least one judge has stated that the execution could take place as early as "today."

"Saddam will be executed today or tomorrow. All the measures have been done," said Munir Haddad, an appeal's court judge who upheld the vedict to have Hussein executed. Mr. Haddad is expected to be present during Hussein's execution.

"I am ready to attend and there is no reason for delay," added Haddad.

Not everyone agrees that Hussein should be executed. The Prime Minister of Yemen is trying to urge U.S. President George W. Bush to stop the execution from taking place.

"The Yemeni government urges [Bush] to intercede to prevent this sentence from being carried out ... as it would lead to more internal strife and suffering for the Iraqi people," said a letter to Bush from Yemeni P.M., Abdul-Qader Bagammal.

He is expected to be hanged on a custom-made gallows that has been kept in Camp Cropper, a U.S. military prison at Baghdad airport where Hussein has been imprisoned.

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