TEHRAN, July 4 (MNA) – Iran announced on Sunday that it has prepared a lawsuit against former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein for his 1980 attack on Iran and the crimes he committed against the Iranian people.

Foreign ministry spokesman Hamid-Reza Asefi told a regular news briefing that the concerned bodies are compiling evidence against Saddam and Iran will certainly present its complaint to the court that is trying the former dictator.


Asefi said Saddam committed many crimes against the Islamic Repubulic; initiating a war against Iran, killing many Iranian people, using chemical weapons against Iranian forces and citizens in different parts of the country, destroying houses, and maiming thousands.


He said the Iraqi court should be open and transparent and investigate all the crimes committed by the ruthless regime.


"We have asked the Iraqis to explain why the attack on Iran did not feature among the charges against Saddam, even though the judge said the question would be addressed at a later date," Asefi said.


Saddam launched a bloody war against Iran in 1980 grabbing large parts of Iranian territory. The United Nations has established Saddam’s regime as the initiator of the war against Iran.


Saddam enjoyed Western support, particularly U.S. support, in its war against Iran; western companies provided Saddam with the technical know-how for producing chemical and biological weapons.


During its war against Iran the current U.S. defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld met with Saddam in Baghdad assuring him of U.S. backing.


Saddam, toppled last year by a US-led invasion, appeared on Thursday before the court in Baghdad charged with crimes against humanity. But the seven charges listed against him do not relate to the Iran-Iraq war


Saddam's 1990 invasion of Kuwait and his gassing of the Iraqi Kurdish town Halabja in 1988, however, do feature on the charge sheet.


On Friday, Iran's former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani said Saddam's trial should be totally public and denounced the fact that the Iran-Iraq war was not among the main charges.


"Saddam's trial must be completely public. It is necessary to let Saddam express himself, that the Americans express themselves, that we can express ourselves and that people say what they have to say," Rafsanjani told Friday prayers.


"Saddam's extraordinary crimes must be exposed, but from the first words spoken by Saddam the Americans have imposed censorship, broadcasting only what they wanted," he said, calling it "shame for the United States".


"If the Iraqi court refuses to include (Saddam's responsibility) in the unleashing of the war against Iran, it means it is on a directive by the Americans.”


Rafsanjani also said that a trial covering Saddam's use of chemical weapons would serve to expose Western support for the ousted Iraqi dictator as he battled against Iran's burgeoning Islamic Revolution.




News Code 6596

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