Al-Hashemi defies death sentence, says ruling is void
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
AP photoIraq's fugitive vice president, Tariq al-Hashemi, has defied the death sentence given to him by an Iraqi court, reiterating his belief that the court acted under political influence.
Al-Hashemi spoke to members of the press in a conference today in Ankara, where he said he was innocent and was ready to face trial in a "just and fair" court.
The fugitive official said he did not recognize the court's ruling against him, adding that the "decision was not legal" and that the court which passed the death sentence was "not competent."
"This ruling is an honor for me," al-Hashemi said. "It is a ruling of acquittal, as far as I am concerned. It shows I am right. It is the price I am being asked to pay in exchange for my love for my country.”
Al-Hashemi was convicted of murder yesterday and sentenced to death by hanging.