Saddam Hussein's trial for genocide against Kurds resumes

The chief judge threw Saddam Hussein and another defendant out of court Tuesday after the ex-president shouted during his trial on charges of genocide against the Kurds.

The judge, Mohammed Oreibi al-Khalifa, cut off the microphone as Saddam attempted to speak. He then pointed to court baliffs to escort the ex-president from the courtroom.

Saddam interrupted the proceedings by shouting a verse from the Quran, the Muslim holy book.

"Fight them and God will punish them," Saddam yelled in what appeared to be a call for members of his disbanded Arab Baath Socialist Party to continue fighting U.S. forces in Iraq.

In TV broadcasts of the scene, neither Saddam's words nor the judge's voice were heard. The camera showed the judge gesticulating to the baliffs to remove somebody from the dock. The camera did not show Saddam's outburst.

The judge then closed the proceedings to the media.

Before the closure, the judge told Saddam's six co-defendants that he had been patient with them, but they were obstructing the trial.

"I allowed you to say what you want, but you've been making problems," he said solemnly, reports AP.

The defendant Hussein Rashid Mohammed stood up and shouted insults at the prosecutors. When a baliff forced him back into his chair, the former army commander punched him.

The judge had Mohammed thrown out and closed the session.