Saddam's right-hand man resurfaces a year after his 'killing'

Saddam's right-hand man resurfaces a year after his 'killing'
Iraq's most famous war fugitive, Izzat al-Douri, has risen from the ashes once again to make a call for Arab states to take a stand against Iranian "occupation" in Iraq.
2 min read
08 April, 2016
Douri's death has been reported numerous times since he became a fugitive [YouTube]

Saddam Hussein's former right-hand man has resurfaced in a video, a year after he was supposedly killed, to call for an anti-Iranian crusade in Iraq.

Izzat al-Douri appeared in a video broadcast on a Saudi-owned television station on Thursday, reading out a statement while wearing a military uniform and his characteristic bright red moustache.

Douri was reportedly killed by a pro-government militia in Salaheddin province north of Baghdad in March last year.

"In Yemen, there are two ways to expel the Persians and free it: the first way is to force Iran and its agents to comply with the UN Security Council resolutions. The second way is to escalate the pursuit of Iranian agents and put an end to all their abilities and potential," Douri said.

"We consider everything that is happening in Iraq from Iran and its militias and military; the responsibility of the US," he said in the short video clip flanked by two bodyguards.

He added: "The US has not taken action to save Iraq and its people from Iran's hegemony and occupation, and to stop the bloodshed, destruction and the changing of its [religious] demographics, so Iraqis should resist [the occupation]."

In the video Douri also urged Arab countries to stand against Iran under the Saudi-led Arab coalition.

He made no reference to the Islamic State group [IS], despite widespread reports that his militia, the Naqshabandi Army, helped the militant group as it swept through western Iraq in 2014.

Douri was vice president at the time of the 2003 US-led invasion.

When Hussein's regime crumbled, Douri went on the run and became Iraq's most famous war fugitive.

While the upper echelons of the Baath party have all been locked up, fled the country, or killed, Douri's whereabouts remain unknown.

For 14 years, Douri, nicknamed "The Iceman" for his humble origins selling blocks of ice, has evaded Iraqi security services and US intelligence.

Douri is thought to have escaped to Syria, while his death in battle or by ill-health, has been reported numerous times.