IRAQ: SEVEN PEOPLE EXECUTED
March 13, 2014: Iraq executed seven people, including three agents of the ousted Saddam Hussein regime – Hadi Hassuni, Abdul Hassan al-Majid and Farukh Hijazi – who were convicted of the 1994 killing in Beirut of Sheikh Taleb al-Suhail al-Tamimi, the father of a current MP.
Tamimi's daughter, Safia al-Suhail, has been an Iraqi lawmaker since 2005. She was elected to the Council of Representatives in March 2010 polls as part of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's slate, but is now an independent MP.
Tamimi, head of the Banu Tamim tribe, fled to Beirut with his family after a Baath Party coup in 1968 and later attempted his own coup against Saddam, but was gunned down outside his home in the Lebanese capital on 14 April 1994.
Lebanon severed its ties with Iraq in the aftermath of the killing, and it arrested five Iraqi diplomats and one Lebanese accomplice over the assassination. All but one of those arrested were released without charge, while one of the diplomats died in prison in Lebanon. The other four diplomats later returned to Iraq only to flee after the 2003 US-led invasion that ousted Saddam.
The four other people executed on 13 March were convicted on terror charges, the justice ministry said.
The executions, carried out by hanging, brought to at least 44 the total number of people put to death in 2014. The country executed at least 169 people in 2013, according to an AFP tally based on statements from the Justice Ministry and reports from officials. It was the highest figure since the US-led invasion and placed it third in the world for the number of executions after only China and Iran. (Sources: AFP, 13/03/2014)