France opposes Saddam death penalty

30th June 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, June 30 (AFP) - France on Wednesday reiterated its opposition to the death penalty "under any circumstances" after the new Iraqi government took legal custody of former president Saddam Hussein and said it would reinstate capital punishment.

PARIS, June 30 (AFP) - France on Wednesday reiterated its opposition to the death penalty "under any circumstances" after the new Iraqi government took legal custody of former president Saddam Hussein and said it would reinstate capital punishment.

Paris also called for Saddam, who was captured by US forces in December, to be given a fair trial in compliance with international law.

"It is now up to the Iraqi people to judge Saddam Hussein, in a trial that must abide by the rules of international law," said French foreign ministry spokeswoman Cecile Pozzo di Borgo.

Iraq's interim government took legal custody from the US-led military of the ousted Iraqi president and 11 top members of his regime on Wednesday. Saddam was due to appear in a special Iraqi court on Thursday.

Iraqi President Sheikh Ghazi al-Yawar said in an interview published on Wednesday in the Arabic-language daily Asharq al-Awsat that his government had approved the reinstatement of the death penalty.

He added that the decision would be formally announced in the "near future".

When asked by reporters about the Iraqi president's statement, the French spokeswoman said: "We are opposed to the application of the death penalty under any circumstances."

© AFP

 

Subject: French news

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