Saddam Hussein's cousin Ali Hassan al-Majeed, also known as Chemical Ali, was sentenced to death Sunday for involvement in a poison gas attack that killed about 5,000 Iraqis in 1988, an official with the Iraqi High Tribunal said.
The Iraqi Cabinet pressed the presidential council Tuesday to ratify court-ordered executions for several former Iraqi officials convicted of crimes against humanity, including the ex-general known as "Chemical Ali," a government spokesman said.
Court proceedings in the trial against Tariq Aziz, one of the best-known faces of Saddam Hussein's former regime in Iraq, and several co-defendants have ended after being in session only briefly Tuesday.
Iraq's prime minister wants the American military to hand over "Chemical Ali" and two other convicted officials from Saddam Hussein's regime for execution, an Iraqi official said Tuesday, but the move could widen the divide between Iraq's Sunni and Shiite Muslim communities.
Saddam Hussein's cousin known as "Chemical Ali" and 14 others faced charges of crimes against humanity for the brutal crushing of a Shiite uprising after the 1991 Gulf War Tuesday as Iraq's third trial against former regime officials began with three of the defendants already sentenced to death in another case.
A suicide truck bombing in the northern city of Tal Afar last week is the deadliest single attack since the Iraq war began in 2003, a high-ranking Iraqi Interior Ministry official said Monday as a new death toll for the blast surfaced.
Former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein went on trial Monday for genocide and crimes against humanity in the so-called Anfal campaign, the deadly assaults in 1988 in the Kurdish region that included the former regime's alleged use of poison gas.
The second trial of former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein will begin on August 21 on genocide charges stemming from a deadly campaign against Iraqi Kurds in the late 1980s, the Iraqi High Tribunal has announced.
The Iraqi government has made key strides in the year since it regained sovereignty from the United States -- holding historic elections in January and preparing war crimes cases against Saddam Hussein and some of his aides.
Captured former Iraqi official Ali Hassan al-Majid -- also known as "Chemical Ali" -- and another jailed member of Saddam Hussein's regime were interrogated in court Saturday before a tribunal of investigative judges.