Iraqi lawmaker could be executed for visiting Israel

Monday, September 22, 2008 |  Israel Today Staff  

An Iraqi lawmaker who has made two trips to Israel and advocates peaceful relations with the Jewish state had his parliamentary immunity lifted last week and now could face a death sentence if Baghdad chooses to prosecute him.

Mithal Alusi visited Israel for the second time last week to attend a conference at the International Institute for Counterterrorism in Herzliya. News of the trip caused a political storm resulting in the Iraqi parliament overwhelmingly voting to strip Alusi of his immunity.

Without his parliamentary immunity, Alusi can now be prosecuted for visiting the Jewish state, a crime punishable by death under a decades-old law.

The Associated Press indicated that America's ongoing role in the Iraqi government is likely to preclude a death sentence, though Alusi's political career is now over.

Alusi's first visit to Israel came in 2005 and led to an assassination attempt that left his two sons dead.

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