The German government said on Saturday that it is opposed to the death sentence for former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, who was hanged earlier in the day.
Speaking on Berlin's RBB radio, Deputy Foreign Minister Gernot Erler said that Germany held the view that the Iraqi leader was guilty of "serious crimes."
However, the government remains opposed to the death penalty no matter where the execution was carried out, Erler said.
On Wednesday, speaking at a regular briefing, German government spokesman Thomas Steg affirmed that Germany rejects the death penalty because it is banned in German and all European Union member countries.
Saddam, who was captured in December 2003, was executed by hanging at dawn on Saturday in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad for crimes against humanity.