Nur al-Cubicle

A blog on the current crises in the Middle East and news accounts unpublished by the US press. Daily timeline of events in Iraq as collected from stories and dispatches in the French and Italian media: Le Monde (Paris), Il Corriere della Sera (Milan), La Repubblica (Rome), L'Orient-Le Jour (Beirut) and occasionally from El Mundo (Madrid).

Thursday, July 01, 2004

1 July 2004 Events in Iraq

Today's chaos: Kalashnikovs are Not Enough, Zarkawi misses appointment, Kuwaiti hounds and goodbye to Sanchez.

22.25 Baghdad. SHELLS TESTED. A dozen projectile shells found by the police will be tested for the presence of Sarin. They have already tested positive for mustard gas. The shells were manufactured prior to 1991.

21.45 New York. BLIX: IRAQIS ARE RELIEVED. I think the Iraqis must be relieved to see Saddam Hussein before a tribunal of Iraqi judges. The Iraqis lived through decades of tyranny, it must be liberating to be rid of him. But that doesn't mean that occupation should substitute tyranny.

21.12 Sacramento. RUMSFELD: POLISH CONTINGENT FINDS CHEMICAL WEAPONS. The Poles have found 16 or 17 shells with mustard gas and Sarin capable of killing thousands of people, says Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in a radio interview in California.

21.00 London. UK OPPOSED TO DEATH PENALTY FOR SADDAM. A spokesman for Tony Blair states position of London, saying: We have notified the Iraqi government of our position. But it is an Iraqi trial and a sovereign country is a sovereign country.

20.50 Washington. CHENEY: WAR ON TERROR REQUIRES DECISIVE ACTION. Dick Cheney says that war on terror requires decisive action and that America is safer after the wars against Iraq and Afghanistan.

20.22 Amman. SADDAM'S ATTORNEYS: THE TRIAL IS A FARCE. The trial of Saddam Hussein is only a farse to satisfy the Anglo-american coalition., says British attorney Tim Hughes, a member of the legal team defending the ex-dictator.

19.50 Baghdad. UN LOOKS FOR OFFICE SPACE IN BAGHDAD. The United Nations is returning to Iraq and is looking for a building in Baghdad to house their offices.

19.45 Moscow. PUTIN SENDS MESSAGE OF FRIENDSHIP TO NEW IRAQI GOVERNMENT Russian President Putin recalls traditional good relations between Baghdad and Moscow.

19.11 Tikrit. TIKRIT LAMENTS SADDAM. Tikrit, Saddam Hussein's home town, was sullen as residents did not hide their bitterness after seeing Saddam in chains as he appeared in a pretrial hearing.

19.00 Washington. BUSH HAPPY TO SEE SADDAM BROUGHT TO JUSTICE. US President George W. Bush is happy to see Saddam Hussein brought to justice, says Press Secretary Scott McClellan.

18.50 Amman. SADDAM'S LEGAL TEAM HEADS FOR BAGHDAD. Saddam Hussein's legal defense team prepares to leave for Baghdad, despite lack of security, says Ziad Khasaweneh, one of 25 members of the team. The team will also defend ex-Deputy Prime Minister Tareq Aziz and ex-Defense Minister Mohammad Sultan Hashem.

18.23 Baghdad. TRIAL OF SADDAM: ELEVEN FORMER COLLABORATORS CHARGED. Following that for Saddam Hussein, a pretrial hearing was held for eleven others including ex-Deputy Prime Minister Tareq Aziz, Hassan Ali al-Majid ("Chemical" Ali), and Taha Yassin Ramadan, ex-Vice President.

17.55 Rome. ITALY SAYS 'NO' TO DEATH PENALTY FOR SADDAM. Saddam Hussein's execution must be avoided despite the enormity of Saddam's crimes, says Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini. I personally fought the campaign for a moratorium against capital punishmen worldover and I don't know if the 'Alawi government has reintroduced the death penalty.


17.15 Ramadi. US MARINE KILLED. An American Marine was killed today in Anbar Province in western Iraq.

15.50 Baghdad. SADDAM: THE SOLE CHRISTIAN IN NEW GOVERNMENT WANTS DEATH PENALTY. The only Christian in the new Iraqi government, Ms. Pascale Icho Warda, favors the death penalty for Saddam Hussein. Ms. Warda said in an interview French newspaper, Le Parisien, We have brought back the death penalty. Whatever the final decision of the judges, I personally am in favor of seeing Saddam receive a death sentence.

15,50 Baghdad. AL QAEDA, ZARQAWI PLAN TO KIDNAP US SERVICEWOMEN. Abu Musab al Zarqawi wants to take US female soldiers hostage to get even for Lynndie England's treatment of Iraqi prisoners, reports The Washington Times.

14,30 Baghdad. SADDAM ON TV: BEARDED AND WEARING GRAY SUIT, BBC transmits images of pretrial hearing showing Saddam with a manicured salt-and-pepper beard and wearing a gray suit and white shirt without a tie. He had visibly lost weight.

14:00 Baghdad. SADDAM MAKES FUN OF JUDGE AND THE USA. Those Americans say I have millions squirreled away in Switzerland, so why are you asking me if I can afford a lawyer? , was the half-smiling retort of Saddam Hussein, when asked in his pretrial hearing if the had the resources to pay for his legal defense.

13.50 Baghdad. SADDAM: I LEARNED ABOUT THE MASSACRE OF THE KURDS ON TV. Saddam Hussein says he found out about the 1988 Halabja massacre through the television. Together with the charge of invading Kuwait, these were the only two charges eliciting comment from Saddam.

13.40 Nassiriya. PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT ASKS ITALIAN CONTINGENT TO STAY. Nassiriya Governor Sabri Hamid Al Rumayad, asked the Italian contingent to stay and to procure heavy weapons for the local security force. "Our Kalashnikovs are not enough to combat the enemy".

13.38 Baghdad. SADDAM TIRED AND CONFUSED: "I AM THE PRESIDENT OF IRAQ". Saddam appeared to be a mere shadow of his former self. At the conclusion of his pre-trial hearing, he was heard to sigh, " "halas" (finally!) and got up to leave.

13.31 Baghdad. SADDAM: 'THIS HEARING IS A COMEDY'. "This hearing is a comedy", exclaimed Saddam Hussein in front of the Iraqi judge holding the hearing.




13,15 Baghdad. SADDAM REFUSES TO SIGN RAP SHEET. Saddam Hussein refused to initial a document detailing the charges against him. He also defended the invasion of Kuwait.

12,19 Nassiriya. CARBOMB THREATS. "We have received creditable information on the possibility of attacks on our province.", says the head of the Iraqi national guard in Nassiriya.

12,17 Baghdad. SADDAM APPEARS BEFORE JUDICIAL PANEL. Saddam Hussein appeared before a judicial panel and was charged with 12 counts, including war crimes ans genocide. The hearing was held in a secret location near Baghdad. Delayed images were relayed to the waiting room.

11,05 Baghdad. FINANCE MINISTRY OFFICIAL FATALLY WOUNDED. Finance Ministry official Ihsane Karim Ghanem was killed and two bodyguards wounded by a roadside bomb in a Baghdad street. At the same time in another part of the capital, a US military convoy was bombed, killing two passers-by and wounding a third.

10,39 Mosul. COALITION SOLDIER KILLED IN MOSUL. A Coalition soldier was killed outside Mosul in a roadside bombing.

09,52 Washington. SANCHEZ RELIEVED OF COMMAND BY CASEY. General Ricardo Sanchez was relieved of his command by General George Casey, former commander of US troops in Germany.

08,51 Baghdad. ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT. Ihsane Karim Ghanem, a Finance Ministry official, was gravely wounded by a roadside bomb which struck his convoy in the Al-Yarmuk quarter of tBaghdad. His driver and a bodyguard were killed.

08,15 Basrah. US SOLDIER DIES IN ROAD ACCIDENT. An American soldier was killed and four others injured in a road accident near the Kuwaiti border.

07.15 Fallujah. AIR STRIKE ON FALLUJA, ZARQAWI A NO-SHOW. BOUNTY RAISED FOR AL QAEDA LEADER. Al-Zarqawi missed yet another appointment with the Americans as rescue workers shifted through the ruins of a home looking for survivors. The bounty for Abu Musab al Zarqawi was raised from $10 to $25 million.

07,01 Fallujah. AIR STRIKE ON CITY, 7 DEAD. The toll after a US airstrike was 7 dead and 17 wounded. Meanwhile in the eastern part of the city, US troops and guerrillas clashed using small arms.


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