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       Sunday, January 15, 2006

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Saddam Trial Judge Tries to Resign, Iraqi Government Works to Prevent

BAGHDAD - Rizgar Mohammed Amin, the judge presiding over the Saddam Hussein trial, has announced his intention to resign in protest of what he called government interference in the trial.

A "source close to Amin" was quoted by Reuters as saying, "He tendered his resignation to the court a few days ago ... I am not sure if he will go back on his decision ... He had complaints from the government that he was being too soft in dealing with Saddam. They want things to go faster."

Amin has come under fire by Iraqi and even American officials for allowing Hussein to speak during the trial, even during what another Reuters reporter called "tirades," over and above what the law allows in a courtroom.

Iraq's Cabinet has yet to rule on whether or not Amin's resignation will be accepted. If Amin succeeds in quitting, it will not affect the proceedings--another judge will be appointed. However, the U.S. is worried that Amin's resignation could undermine the legitimacy and credibility of the court in a country that is still finding its place as a democracy.

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posted by Kit Jarrell at 12:35 PM  


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