Published January 14, 2015
A notorious cousin of Saddam Hussein has been executed, about a week after receiving his fourth death sentence for crimes against humanity.
Iraq says the man known as "Chemical Ali" was hanged today for ordering the 1988 poison gas attack that killed more than 5,000 Kurds.
The chemical air raid is thought to be the worst single attack of its kind against civilians.
The general, whose name was Ali Hassan al-Majid, was one of the most brutal members of Saddam's inner circle. He led sweeping military campaigns in the 1980s and 1990s that claimed tens of thousands of lives.
His attacks against rebellious Kurds wiped out entire villages. He also led bloody crackdowns on Shiites in southern Iraq, including the suppression of a 1991 uprising which also involved the use of poisonous gas.
He also ordered the deaths of several relatives.
He was one of the last high-profile members of the former Sunni-led regime still on trial in Iraq.