Dutch leaders welcome Saddam's conviction

6th November 2006, Comments 0 comments

6 November 2006, AMSTERDAM — The Netherlands has welcomed the conviction of ousted Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein on crimes against humanity.

6 November 2006

AMSTERDAM — The Netherlands has welcomed the conviction of ousted Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein on crimes against humanity.

Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende said the death sentence was appropriate given Saddam's "reign of terror".

Speaking in the TV programme 'Buitenhof' on Sunday, Balkenende said further: "Justice had been handed down for what he had done".

Saddam was convicted of crimes against humanity stemming from the killing of 148 Shiite men in Dujail after an assassination attempt against him in 1982.

But the Christian Democrat CDA leader also said the Netherlands was opposed to the death penalty. "The death penalty is not right," he said.

Balkenende also pointed out that the US-backed Iraqi High Tribunal's ruling on Sunday was not the final verdict because Saddam could still appeal.

In welcoming the ruling, Foreign Minister Ben Bot also said during a visit to Afghanistan that the ruling would not be the end to the legal process.

Saddam's appeal will start this week and is expected to last a month.

And despite the fact the Netherlands is opposed to the death penalty, Bot said he "understood that the toughest sentence was imposed given the seriousness of the crimes".

[Copyright Expatica News 2006]

Subject: Dutch news

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