Guard says Saddam Hussein's body stabbed

Nov. 1, 2008 at 11:32 AM

BAGHDAD, Nov. 1 (UPI) -- The Iraqi government and the head of Saddam Hussein's tribe have denied claims that his body was mutilated before burial after he was executed two years ago.

Talal Misrab, 45, the chief guard at the former Iraqi dictator's tomb, claims to have seen six stab wounds and an injury to the face when he helped bury Hussein after his hanging Dec. 30, 2006, The Times of London reported Saturday.

Hussein was hanged for crimes against humanity and buried in a tomb in al-Awja, a village north of Baghdad.

Misrab's claims have been dismissed by Iraqi government officials who oversaw the hanging and by Sheikh Hasan al-Neda, who now leads Hussein's tribe, the Times reported.

"I swear by God his body was totally intact except for a bruise on his cheek," said al-Neda, adding he helped wash Hussein's body in accordance with Islamic traditions.

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