Saddam calls Iraqis to unite
Ousted Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein has said in a letter that he would go to the gallows as a "sacrifice" and called on his former Iraqi subjects to unite against their enemies.
Saddam, in a letter written to the Iraqi people from his cell before his appeal against a death sentence failed, said Wednesday: "I sacrifice myself. If God wills it, he will place me among the true men and martyrs."
Saddam's defence counsel Khalil Dulaimi told AFP in Jordan that Saddam had written the letter in November when he was first sentenced to death and that it had been released to the public after the news that his appeal had failed. "Its release was delayed by the length of the procedures imposed by the Americans," Dulaimi said.
On Tuesday, a panel of appeals court judges confirmed Saddam's conviction for crimes against humanity and ordered that he be hanged within 30 days.
Saddam blamed his old enemies the United States and Iran for the bloodshed engulfing Iraq. "The enemies of your country, the invaders and the Persians have found your unity a barrier between you and those who are now ruling you. Therefore, they drove their hated wedge among you," he wrote.
"O faithful people, I bid you farewell as my soul goes to God the compassionate," he added. "Long live Iraq. Long Live Iraq. Long live Palestine. Long live jihad and the mujahideen. God is great."