A top election official said Tuesday that Iraqi law will allow Saddam Hussein and thousands of other Iraqi detainees who have not been brought to trial to vote in this weekend's crucial constitutional referendum.
However, Abdul Hussein Hindawi, the head of the Independent Electoral Commission in Iraq, said it was still awaiting a full list from the Interior Ministry and the US-led coalition of the detainees who should be allowed to receive ballots and vote on Saturday at Abu Ghraib prison and several other US detention centers.
"All non-convicted detainees have the right to vote. That includes Saddam and other former government officials. They will vote," Hindawi said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. Saddam's long-awaited trial is scheduled to begin October 19 on charges that he and seven of his regime's henchmen ordered the 1982 massacre of 143 people in a mainly Shiite town north of Baghdad following a failed attack on Saddam's life.