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Hussein, Codefendant Announce Hunger Strike

Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikriti addressing the Baghdad court today (epa) 14 February 2006 -- Former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein today announced that he was on hunger strike for three days.

He made the statement in court at the start of the latest session of his trial.

Hussein shouted his support for Iraqi insurgents, yelling, "Long live the mujahedin," as he entered the courtroom. Hussein's half brother and codefendant, Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikriti, was also heard repeatedly shouting, "Long live Iraq."

Another defendant, Awad al-Bandar, also said he was not eating.

The latest development follows a day of chaotic courtroom scenes on 13 February when Hussein and his half brother claimed they had been forced to appear in court.

Hussein and the seven codefendants face charges related to the 1982 killing of 148 Iraqis in the Shi'ite village of Al-Dujayl, north of Baghdad, following an abortive attempt on Hussein's life.

(compiled from agency reports)

Saddam Hussein In Pictures

Saddam Hussein In Pictures

A slideshow of photographs from Saddam Hussein's years ruling Iraq through his downfall.

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