Former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein's daughter, Raghad, gave an interview to an Israeli journalist, in which she spoke of plans to hire an American lawyer, "as long as he's not Jewish". Raghad added she was "proud of my father's appearance in court".
"My only request is that my father get a fair trial", Raghad Hussein told Dafna Barak in an interview published Tuesday by the Arabic-language daily al-Sharq al-Awsat.
Raghad, 36, now residing in the Jordanian capital of Amman, was prompted to cooperate with journalists in order to avoid embarrassing her Jordanian hosts. Barak, an independent reporter, said she contacted Raghad over the Internet with the assistance of Raghad's children – especially her 15-year-old son, named Saddam. Until recently, their contact had been cut off by someone blocking Barak's messages.
Raghad, in the interview, complained that her father's lawyers were requesting exorbitant fees, and she expressed a desire to hire an American lawyer.
Barak then suggested a few names, one of them Jewish-sounding. "Excellent, but he's Jewish", responded Saddam's daughter. "You must understand that my father would never allow it. I don't judge people, but I cannot cooperate with Jews".
"I am proud of my father's appearance in court", Raghad added, "the way he showed no fear, and the way he spoke. He's a brave hero. I saw him in court, and he doesn't look well. We tried to get information from the Red Cross, but we didn't succeed".
Meanwhile, Raghad also praised her two brothers, Uday and Qusai, who were killed by American forces about a year ago in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul. She said that her younger sister, Hala, has yet to recover from their death. “They fought till the last moment. I am proud of them”.
She told Barak, “I cannot answer personal or political questions. I am the daughter of Saddam. You wouldn’t understand. I have a commitment since I carry his name and he needs my help now. After the death of my brothers, I am the only who can do it. My friends expect me to help him”.
Raghad together with her five children and her younger sister and her four children live in a house given to her by the Jordanian authorities in the upscale neighborhood of Abdun in Amman.
According to Raghad, she does not have money as many people believe. “We left with nothing. I am not ashamed that I don’t have money. I am the daughter of Saddam and I don’t want money from anyone”. (Albawaba.com)
© 2004 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com )