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Kuwait, Iraq in contact over Saddam war crimes
Updated: 2005-09-11 09:39

Kuwait said on Saturday it was discussing with Iraq handing over a long list of crimes it says were committed by former occupier Saddam Hussein whose trial begins next month, reported Reuters.

Justice Minister Ahmad Baqer said the documents will be handed over to a tribunal trying Saddam and other former aides under "judicial cooperation" between the two countries, which resumed ties after Saddam's ouster in 2003.

"There are contacts between the Kuwaiti and Iraqi foreign ministries," Baqer told reporters when asked when the file will be handed over to Iraqi authorities.

Baqer said that in the documents, Kuwait demanded that Saddam be sentenced to death for crimes committed against Kuwait during the 1990-91 Iraqi occupation.

The former Iraqi president is being investigated on possible charges of crimes against humanity and genocide but so far has been charged on one count -- the killing of Shi'ite Muslims in the Iraqi village of Dujail in 1982.

Saddam is due to go on trial on October 19.

"Our files are ready and they contain about 200 suspects, all with proof, photographs and actual affidavits from witnesses," Baqer said.

When it was first announced in May, the list named other key suspects besides Saddam, including former deputy prime minister Taha Yassin Ramadan, Saddam's cousin Ali Hassan al-Majid, Saddam's half brother Sabawi Ibrahim al-Tikriti and deputy premier Tareq Aziz.

The Kuwait public prosecution's list included crimes against humanity, dealing with the disappearance of 605 people, mostly Kuwaitis, during the seven-month occupation and ensuing war.

Kuwait has identified the remains of more than 200 of them following the ouster of Saddam.

The list also referred to war crimes including torture and the killing of 603 "martyrs," including prisoners of war whose remains were found in mass graves in Iraq.

It also listed the use of armed force against Kuwait.

Pro-American Kuwait was the launch pad for the 2003 invasion of Iraq which toppled Saddam.

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