Tariq Aziz's Body Stolen

Government recovers corpse of Saddam henchman
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 12, 2015 12:07 AM CDT
Tariq Aziz's Body Stolen
In this image made from television, Saddam Hussein's former foreign minister, Tariq Aziz, stands in a court in Baghdad, Iraq.   (AP Photo/APTN)

(Newser) – Strange goings-on in Baghdad: Unidentified body snatchers made off with the corpse of Saddam henchman Tariq Aziz at Baghdad International Airport yesterday, according to his family. His body was to be flown to Jordan for burial, but airline officials have confirmed that the flight left without the casket, the AP reports. The Aziz family lawyer tells al-Jazeera that the body is now apparently in government hands. "The government has been able to get the body from the unidentified men who took it," the lawyer says. "But, we don't know where the body exactly is right now or what will happen next."

Aziz, the highest-ranking Christian in the Saddam regime, died last week at the age of 79. He was sentenced to death in 2010 but Iraqi leaders refused to sign the execution order. His family says that he asked for his funeral to take place in Jordan and they believe militants would attack the grave if he was buried in Iraq, where his hometown is now under ISIS control, al-Jazeera reports. (Another Saddam henchman, Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri, released a speech last month, weeks after he had supposedly been killed by government forces.)

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