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Saddam execution rushed: ex-Russian premier

Saddam's execution was rushed to prevent the former Iraqi leader from revealing facts that could compromise the US, Yevgeny Primakov said.

india Updated: Jan 15, 2007 11:53 IST

The execution of Saddam Hussein was rushed to prevent the former Iraqi leader from revealing facts that could compromise the United States, former Russian prime minister Yevgeny Primakov has said.

Saddam was executed in an "unexpected" way so "he could not have the last word" and reveal compromising information on the relationship between the United States and his former regime, the veteran diplomat said on Rossiya television channel on Sunday.

If Saddam Hussein "had said everything (he knew), the current United States president (George W Bush) would have been greatly embarrassed," said Primakov, a Middle East expert formerly on good terms with Saddam.

Primakov highlighted the military cooperation between Washington and Baghdad during the 1980s when the United States was fighting the fundamentalist threat from Iran.

He also alleged that Saddam made a deal with Washington before the 2003 invasion of Iraq to allow the United States to occupy the country without meeting any opposition.

Primakov made two confidential visits to Iraq at the request of Russian President Vladimir Putin shortly before the US-led invasion of the country.

Saddam was executed for crimes against humanity on December 30, which coincided with the first day of the Eid al-Adha feast and drew widespread Muslim condemnation.