A file picture taken on May 24, 2006, shows former Iraqi deputy prime minister Tarek Aziz testifying for the defense during Saddam’s trial held in Baghdad’s heavily fortified Green Zone. (AFP PHOTO/POOL/MARCO DI LAURO)
Tareq Aziz, who served as the voice of Saddam Hussein’s regime, died in Iraqi hospital Friday aged 79 after years of poor health as a convicted prisoner, a doctor said.
“He died because of a heart attack,” the doctor said.
Adel Abdulhussein al-Dakhili, the deputy governor of Dhi Qar, confirmed that Aziz died in hospital in Nasiriyah, where the former foreign minister was brought when his health worsened.
Aziz had long been in poor health, suffering from heart and respiratory problems, high blood pressure and diabetes, and his family repeatedly called for his release from custody…
…As Saddam’s principal spokesman, the bespectacled Aziz — the only Christian in the now-executed dictator’s inner circle — was a recognizable figure internationally whose rise was attributed to unswerving loyalty to Saddam…
He changed his name: his original name was ‘Mikhail Yuhanna’