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Saddam's stop-start trial goes on without him
Updated: 2005-12-08 07:23

Saddam's half-brother Barzan, a former intelligence chief, complained of his own treatment in jail on Wednesday. He said he had been denied tea and coffee for a year, lost 40 pounds in weight -- and offered only inferior brand cigarettes.

The trial is at heart about the killings of 148 people from Dujail.

Witness F, the eighth person to testify, gave specific if sparse details of a killing that he said he had witnessed in a Baghdad jail, although when asked under cross-examination if he had seen anyone killed in Dujail itself, he replied "No."

Some observers have voiced doubts about the strength of the case, and the judge has instructed some witnesses to focus their testimony. The U.N.'s human rights chief in Iraq says the trial has little prospect of meeting international standards.

At the end of tape-delayed coverage on Wednesday, Iraqiya state television played a montage of scenes of Saddam and his co-defendants heckling in the dock, intercut with images of torture. It ended with a shot of Saddam and Barzan, overlaid with blood-red stains spreading from their throats.

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