Iraq: ”Chemical Ali” trial to begin next week
Ali Hassan al-Majid, one of Saddam Hussein's closest aides, known as "Chemical Ali," will be the first of the former president's top deputies to be tried, it was announced on Wednesday. He could go on trial next week and will definately be tried by the middle of January, Iraq's Defence Minister Hazim al-Shalaan said.
Al-Majid, 63, is one of Saddam's first cousins and served as Defense Minister. He is accused of launching gas attacks against Kurds in northern Iraq during the 1987 offensive. Following Kuwait occupation, he served as the emirate's military governor from August to November of 1990. After the 1991 war, he commanded the Iraqi Republican Guard divisions that put down a rebellion by the Shi'ites in Iraq's southern marshlands.
He was captured in August 2003.
On Tuesday, Iraq's interim Prime Minister said that war crimes trials against some of the Saddam's top aides were due to begin next week.