Apr 10 2003

Graham Says State Department Should Revoke al Douri’s Diplomatic Immunity

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) has written to Secretary of State Colin Powell requesting the department revoke former Iraqi ambassador to the United Nations Mohammed al Douri’s diplomatic immunity. Graham said al Douri has been involved in propping up the regime of Saddam Hussein. He also played a leading role in the deceit of the United States and world community about the regime’s weapons of mass destruction program and crimes against humanity. “I believe that at the earliest possible time Mr. al Douri’s diplomatic immunity should be revoked, as in his own words Mr. al Douri ‘has no government left for him to represent’” wrote Graham. “Mr. al Douri should be questioned immediately about his knowledge of the regime’s weapons of mass destruction program and human rights violations. He should be interrogated regarding his potential involvement in or knowledge of war crimes or crimes against humanity. “The concept of diplomatic immunity should not be viewed as absolving an individual from legal accountability for regime crimes,” wrote Graham. “To hold otherwise could lead to very disturbing results. For instance, could Saddam Hussein appoint himself or one of his sons as United Nations ambassador and thereby be absolved of all regime crimes? Such an interpretation would be absurd and would violate both the technical definition and spirit of diplomatic immunity. “Please advise me immediately regarding Mr. al Douri’s immunity and whether he will be interviewed regarding regime crimes,” concluded Graham.