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Iraqi PM Threatens Review of Relations With Countries Critical of Saddam Execution

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has threatened to review relations with any country that criticizes his government's execution of deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.

In Baghdad Saturday, Mr. Maliki said Saddam received a fair trial, and that his death by hanging was not a political decision. He said the execution was an internal affair, and he rejected criticism from some governments and human rights groups regarding the way it was carried out.

The strongest criticism came from Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak on Friday. He criticized the timing of Saddam's execution, saying pictures of the hanging seen around the world have made Saddam a "martyr."

A clandestine video taken during the execution shows several Iraqis and hooded executioners taunting Saddam as he is about to be hanged. The grainy video also shows the hanging and Saddam's body dangling from the gallows.

The official Iraqi video showed Mr. Maliki signing the execution order, did not include sound, and stopped before the actual execution.

Saddam Hussein was hanged one week ago following his conviction by an Iraqi court for the 1982 killing of 148 Iraqi Shi'ite Muslims in the village of Dujail. The Iraqi government and the United States says he received a fair trial. But international human rights groups have condemned the proceedings as "deeply flawed."

Two of Saddam's co-defendants also have been sentenced to death. No date has been announced for those executions.

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