Monday, January 23, 2006

New chief judge named in Saddam Hussein trial

Hopefully now the "molly coddling" will come to an end.

BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Iraqi officials named Raouf Rasheed Abdel-Rahman, a Kurd, as the new chief judge in the trial of Saddam Hussein, a top case investigator said Monday.

Abdel-Rahman would replace Rizgar Mohammed Amin, who submitted a letter of resignation on January 15 amid accusations that he was too lenient with trial defendants, said the investigator, Raid Juhi.

Abdel-Rahman will be an interim chief judge, Juhi said.

Amin handed in his resignation to the Iraq High Tribunal citing "personal reasons." He has been strongly criticized inside Iraq for allowing Hussein and his co-defendants to speak out of turn and levy accusations against both the court itself and the U.S. occupation.

Juhi, the chief investigator who prepared evidence for the case, said Iraqi authorities were unable to resolve differences with Amin, who also is Kurdish.

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