4 May 2012
Iraq's vice president said on Friday that he should be tried by an unbiased and independent court.
Tariq al-Hashimi said he had earlier expressed his wish to be tried by an independent and unbiased court in Kirkuk or Irbil instead of the Central Heavy Criminal Court due to his political identity.
"A contrary situation will be against the constitution," al-Hashimi told a press conference in Istanbul.
The Iraqi Supreme Judiciary Council began trying al-Hashimi in Baghdad on Thursday. The court was adjourned till May 10.
Al-Hashimi said he did not join yesterday's court hearing for two reasons, and claimed that his life was under risk in Baghdad.
"I do not think the way they are trying me is fair. I will respect as long as justice system is in line with international law," he said.
Al-Hashimi said he would join the court hearing as long as conditions, place and time were suitable but the media was defining him as a politician in exile but he was not so.
"I booked a ticket to return to Irbil last Tuesday after completing my schedule in Turkey, but a colleague called in the last minute and asked me to delay my return for a few days and wait for a more suitable dialogue atmosphere in Iraq," he said.
Al-Hashimi said he then decided to stay in Turkey for a few more days, and he would hold talks with representatives of universities and non-governmental organizations.