Denmark Protests Iraq Death Penalty

Cheers for Denmark, which is refusing to hand over prisoners to the new Iraqi Government because of its reinstatement of the death penalty.

For now, Danish troops, who operate in southern Iraq under British authority, have an informal agreement that prisoners won't be handed over to the Iraqis without Danish consent, Defense Ministry spokesman Jakob Winther said. Until that agreement becomes official, Danes will not hand over suspects they apprehend.

"We wish to know for certain that people in our custody won't be handed over to face the death penalty," Danish Defense Minister Soeren Gade said late Monday in Washington, where he met with U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to discuss Denmark's participation in peacekeeping missions in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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