The Iranians are hoping this won’t mean that the Iran-Iraq war will not be discussed in court — which would be a chance for them to advance their cause of establishing a Shi’ite Arab client state in Iraq. From AP:
Tehran, Nov. 5(AP): Iranian officials praised Sunday’s death sentence against ousted Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein and said they hoped he would continue to be tried for other alleged crimes against humanity.
“The death sentence for Saddam was a matter of happiness for me. He was a war criminal and a vampire in the current history,” said Kazen Jalai, a spokesman for Iran’s parliamentarian committee of national security and foreign policy.
Just after Saddam was sentenced in a Baghdad courtroom, Iran’ state-run television interrupted its regular program to announce: “A court in Iraq sentenced Saddam, the collapsed dictator to death.”
Saddam and two others were convicted and sentenced to death by hanging for war crimes in the 1982 killings of 148 people in the town of Dujail. The former Iraqi leader shouted out in the court, condemning what he called the occupation of Iraq by U.S.- and British-led coalition forces, and his attorney vowed to appeal the verdict.
For many Iranians, the memories were still fresh from of the destruction they suffered after Saddam invaded their country in 1980, setting in motion a deadly war that would last eight years.
Before Saddam’s verdict was announced, Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini said he felt that execution was the minimum sentence expected.
“Of course, it (the verdict) doesn’t mean that other issues like the Iran-Iraq war should not be reviewed in court,” Hosseini said.