First Published: 2012-11-08


Iraq court sentences Hashemi's guards to death


Court accuses fugitive VP’s two bodyguards of planting roadside bomb in Baghdad as defense lawyers call verdict unfair.


Middle East Online

Hashemi dismisses the charges against he and his staff as politically-motivated

BAGHDAD - Two guards of vice president Tareq al-Hashemi were Thursday sentenced by an Iraqi court to death for planting a roadside bomb, at a hearing boycotted by defence lawyers who said it was unfair.

Hashemi, a top Sunni official and a prominent critic of Shiite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, has himself being handed four death sentences in absentia. He dismisses the charges against he and his staff as politically-motivated.

Thursday's rulings follow death sentences for six other bodyguards at a hearing on Tuesday. Defence lawyers stayed away from both trials to protest what they alleged were pre-arranged verdicts.

"The court issued death sentences for two bodyguards of Tareq al-Hashemi because they were accused of being responsible for a bomb explosion at Mustansariyah intersection" in east Baghdad, said Muayad al-Izzi, who heads Hashemi's defence team.

"Defence lawyers boycotted the case, because it seems the rulings of the court have already been decided," he added.

Izzi said his team were considering boycotting further hearings on charges against Hashemi scheduled for December 2 and December 5, but had not yet made a final decision on whether or not to do so.

Judicial spokesman Abdelsattar Bayraqdar did not respond to requests for comment.

Hashemi, his secretary and his guards were originally accused of running a death squad in mid-December 2011 as the last US troops left the country.

He fled to Iraq's autonomous Kurdistan region, which declined to hand him over to the federal government, and then embarked on a tour that took him to Qatar and Saudi Arabia, and finally to Turkey.


At least 13 killed in Yemen wedding bombing

Israel-Palestinian unrest at risk of turning into religious war

Israeli PM bars ministers from Al-Aqsa compound

US has not yet made decision on Syria no-fly zone

Russian volunteers fighting for Assad regime

Three more stabbing attacks as Palestine-Israel violence continues

Violence in Jerusalem continues

Turkey gives EU's migrant plan offer lukewarm reception

Erdogan uses nuclear, gas deals to pressure Russia over Syria

HRW urges statement from West over imprisoned Bahrain dissidents

EU aim to have migrant 'hotspots' ready by end of November ‘unrealistic’

After nuclear deal, Iran takes central role to end Syria war

Escape or temporary move: Erdogan son settles in Italy

ISIS attack complicates task for Arab coalition in Yemen

Syria army launches broad ground operation in Hama province

Number of confirmed cholera cases rises to 1,200 in Iraq

Russia ‘ready’ to establish contacts with Free Syrian Army

Turkey arrests six people over 'minting coins for ISIS’

US insists no military cooperation with Russia in Syria conflict

Russia warships fire cruise missiles to back Syria army operation

New violence rocks Israel, West Bank

Mortar attack wounds Lebanon soldiers near border with Syria

Iraq forces recapture several areas around Ramadi

Saleh’s party ‘ready’ for UN-brokered Yemen peace

Erdogan’s vision of Syria’s future torn up by Putin

IS bombings will not deter Yemen govt from staying in Aden

EU to ease Turkey migrant burden on conditions

EU kicks off military operation against ‘mafia of the sea’

Russia air strikes targeting Chechen jihadists in Syria

Russia examining US proposals to coordinate Syria strikes

Russia hints at willingness on Syria 'deconfliction' with US

France may strip five terrorists of nationality

Israel demolition policy: Collective punishment in violation of international law

Violence in Yemen may trigger world's next great refugee crisis

EU to 'step up' work on resettlement of refugees from Turkey

Tunisia dismantles three ISIS recruitment cells

Russia not cooperating with US in Syria safety talks

Halal economy set to grow worldwide

‘Islamic State’ claims series of deadly attacks in Yemen

Recent unrest leaves Netanyahu with tough political choices

NATO accuses Russia of violating Turkey airspace

Unpaid teachers in Iraq Kurdistan go on strike to end ‘farce’

Erdogan warns Russia not to destroy friendship with Turkey

Arab coalition troops among 15 killed in Yemen attacks

Russia has created ‘de facto no-fly zone’ for Assad