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.

 

Turkey, US agree to ‘work together’ in Syria

Fears of expanding Syrian war could trigger peace deal

Six suffer breathing difficulties after Turkish shelling in Afrin

Thousands protest corruption in Tel Aviv amid PM indictment call

Syrians crammed in shared flats in Afrin

Russian mercenaries - a discrete weapon in Syria

Iran protests ban on wrestler who threw bout to avoid Israel

Battle to free Mosul of IS 'intellectual terrorism'

Turkey frees Garman-Turk journalist after one year without charge

Turkey hands life sentences to 3 journalists for Gulen links

Prominent jihadist commander killed by rival Syria rebels

300 Russians killed in Syria battle last week

Tillerson, Erdogan have ‘productive, open’ talk

Iran raises rates, freezes accounts in bid to shore up rial

Kremlin says five Russians killed in US Syria strikes

Oman FM in rare visit by Arab official to Jerusalem

Senior IS leader extradited to Iraq from Turkey

Strikes hit another hospital in Syria's Idlib

Churches snub Jerusalem reception over tax dispute with Israeli authorities

Tillerson says US never gave 'heavy arms' to Kurdish YPG

Captured foreign IS suspects claim innocence

Yemeni mother awaits death penalty for spying for UAE

Fuel shortage shuts down Gaza's only power plant

Morocco arrests three suspected IS terrorists

Family of dead environmentalist in Iran threatened

Israel hands life sentence to Palestinian for triple murder

US appeals to Turkey to concentrate on fighting IS

Turkey sets up new 'observation point' in Syria's Idlib

Malaysia rejects criticism over Israeli visit

Tillerson in Ankara to ease Turkey tensions

Egypt arrests ex-presidential candidate

Tillerson: Hezbollah is part of Lebanon's 'political process'

Netanyahu says government ‘stable’ despite police recommending indictment

Corruption accusations facing Netanyahu

Syria denies ‘unacceptable’ chemical weapons use

Nations pledge nearly $25 billion toward Iraq's reconstruction

Egypt remands in custody former anti-corruption chief

Turkish PM 'hopes' German journalist is freed soon

US agrees to send $1 billion in annual aid to Jordan

Iran arrests money changers amid rial collapse

Saudi Arabia seeks to further reduce oil stockpiles

Turkey imposes curfews in Kurdish-majority province

Tillerson urges allies to focus on fighting IS

France threatens Syria strikes if chemical attacks proven

Tillerson says enduring IS defeat not yet achieved