Saddam associates hanged
The hanging of two of Saddam Hussein's former aides has sparked further outrage from around the world at the regime's continued capital punishment. The two were hanged at dawn yesterday on charges of crimes against humanity for the killing of almost 150 Shias in retribution for a failed assassination bid on Saddam in 1982.
Yesterday's hanging was a particularly gruesome event with the accidental decapitation of Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikriti, Saddam's half-brother.
The hanging is thought to have taken place at the same gallows at which Saddam Hussein was hanged on December 30. The victims were placed in coffins and transported to a village near Tikrit for burial.
Italy has launched a campaign for the United Nations to agree a global moratorium on capital punishment, a move that has been backed by European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso.