U.S. officials say one of the judges working on the tribunal to try former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein has been killed.
The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, say the Iraqi judge was assassinated in Baghdad Tuesday. They did not identify the judge, but said first reports that the victim was the judge in charge of the trial are incorrect. The killing came one day after the tribunal announced it was ready to send its first group of Saddam Hussein's subordinates to trial.
Meanwhile, the top U.S. commander in the Middle East said the days are numbered for the most wanted man in Iraq, terrorist mastermind Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. General John Abizaid says improved Iraqi intelligence and treason within al-Zarqawi's terror network are leading to more success in fighting the group. He spoke after a statement was posted on an Islamic web site in which al-Zarqawi's group claimed responsibility for Monday's suicide attack in Hillah that killed 125 people.