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Coalition Takes Another Card

Qusai Hussein, Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, and Odai Hussein are part of a deck of 55 playing-sized cards to be distributed among members of Coalition forces to aid in finding and capturing former Iraqi leaders considered dangerous or guilty of crimes.
AP
U.S.-led coalition forces in Iraq have taken a former official of Saddam Hussein's Baath Party into custody, U.S. Central Command announced Wednesday.

Ghazi Hammud, Baath regional chairman in the Kut district, is in custody, the command said in a statement. He is No. 32 on Central Command's list of the 55 most-wanted members of Saddam's regime — and the two of hearts on the deck of cards issued to help U.S. soldiers identify regime figures.

The statement did not give details of where or when he was taken into custody or whether he surrendered or was taken by force.

With his detention, the United States has now acknowledged holding 20 of the 55 most wanted. At least one is believed to have been killed in an airstrike.

Defense officials said Monday that coalition forces had captured one of Iraq's top biological weapons scientists.

Huda Salih Mahdi Ammash was taken into custody on Sunday, a Defense Department official said. He had no other details about her detention.

Officials have not yet found any weapons of mass destruction — which the Bush administration cited as justification for the war in Iraq — and have said they need information from Iraqis to help find them.

It was unclear how much cooperation they would get from Ammash, since all other high-ranking officials have denied under interrogation that there was such a program in recent year.

She is number 53 on the most wanted list and referred to as the party's Youth and Trade Bureau Chairman. She played a role in organizing Baath activities in Jordan, Lebanon and Yemen, officials said.

Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said Sunday the United States will have to rely on low-ranking Iraqi officials from Saddam Hussein's government to disclose the existence of banned chemical, biological and nuclear weapons programs.

He said there is little chance that the weapons will be found independently, or that top officials will provide useful information.

"I never believed that we'd just tumble over weapons of mass destruction in that country," Rumsfeld told Fox News Sunday, echoing President Bush's comments Saturday.

Iraqi leaders captured to date include:

No. 10 Muzahim Sa'b Hassan al-Tikriti, who headed Iraq's air defenses under Saddam.

No. 16 Abdel Tawab Mullah Huweish, director of the Office of Military Industrialization and a deputy prime minister in charge of arms development.

No. 18 Muhammad Hamza al-Zubaydi, former member of Iraqi Revolutionary Command Council and central Euphrates regional commander. Played key role in brutal suppression of Shiite Muslim uprising of 1991.

No. 21 Gen. Zuhayr Talib Abd al-Sattar al-Naqib, former head of the Directorate of Military Intelligence.

No. 24 Samir Abd al-Aziz al-Najim, senior figure in Saddam's Baath Party.

No. 32 Ghazi Hammud, Baath regional chairman in the Kut district.

No. 40 Jamal Mustafa Abdallah Sultan al-Tikriti, Saddam's son-in-law and deputy head of the Tribal Affairs Office.

No. 41 Mizban Khadr Hadi, appointed commander of one of four military regions Saddam established on the eve of the war.

No. 42 Taha Muhie-eldin Marouf, only Kurd among Saddam's hierarchy and one of Saddam's two vice presidents.

No. 43 Tariq Aziz, former deputy prime minister.

No. 44 Walid Hamed Tawfiq al-Tikriti, former governor of Basra province and member of Saddam's clan.

No. 45 Hikmat Mizban Ibrahim al-Azzawi, finance minister and deputy prime minister.

No. 47 Amer Mohammed Rashid, oil minister and a former general who led Iraq's top-secret missile program.

No. 48 Muhammad Mahdi al-Salih, former trade minister.

No. 49 Lt. Gen. Hossam Mohammed Amin, national monitoring director.

No. 51 Watban Ibrahim Hasan al-Tikriti, Saddam's half brother.

No. 52 Barzan Ibrahim Hasan al-Tikriti, another half brother of Saddam.

No. 53. Huda Salih Mahdi Ammash, a top biological weapons scientist known as "Mrs. Anthrax" and the only woman on the list.

No. 54 Abd al-Khaliq Abd al-Gafar, Iraq's minister of higher education and scientific research.

No. 55 Lt. Gen. Amer al-Saadi, who officials say led Iraq's unconventional weapons programs.

No. 5, Ali Hassan al-Majid, known as "Chemical Ali," is believed to have been killed.