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Saddam Trial Expected to Resume Monday

The trial of Saddam Hussein is expected to resume Monday.

Saddam and seven former members of his Baath Party are on trial for the deaths of 148 Shi'ites in 1982 in Dujail, a village north of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad.

On Sunday, three lower-level defendants in the case testified they had no involvement in the killings in Dujail. Mizhir Abdullah Ruwaid denied ties to hand-written letters to police that prosecutors say show the defendant identifying people later killed in Dujail. Ruwaid's father also testified, along with co-defendant Ali Dayi Ali.

The hearing marked the first time since the trial began in October the accused were asked to testify about the killings in Dujail.

The defendants face death by hanging if convicted in the killings, which came after a failed assassination attempt on Saddam.

Sunday's hearing was the first since March 1, when Saddam told the court he was responsible for ordering trials for the Shi'ites in Dujail. Saddam insisted his order was not a crime, since the Shi'ites were suspected in a failed plot to assassinate him.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.