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Saddam has first meeting with lawyers

[JURIST] Former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein, now held by the US for over a year at a facility outside Baghdad and due to be tried for war crimes, had his first meeting with members of his Jordanian-based legal defense team Thursday. A meeting last week had been scheduled and then quickly canceled for unknown reasons; on the eve of the anniversary of his capture on December 13 a group of his former aides had conducted a brief hunger strike in protest of their lack of access to counsel. Trials for them are expected to get under way shortly, perhaps as early as next week. In a statement after Thursday's meeting, Hussein's lawyers reported that they had met with their client for more than four hours and that he appeared to be in good health "much better compared to his first appearance before the court" in July. Reuters has more.

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