Judge to rule on issue holding up Fort Hood trial

FORT HOOD, Texas (AP) - A military judge is to address the latest snag holding up the trial in the deadly Fort Hood shooting rampage: the former defense attorneys' objections to helping the suspect as he represents himself in court.

Maj. Nidal Hasan's three ex-attorneys have been ordered to assist during his court-martial if he asks. But they say it's unethical for them to give legal advice about his defense strategy. Hasan has said he'll argue that he shot U.S. troops on the Texas Army post to protect Taliban leaders in Afghanistan.

The judge is expected to rule Friday on the attorneys' objections and possibly about whether to allow Hasan's defense strategy.

Hasan, an American-born Muslim, faces the death penalty if convicted in the 2009 rampage that left 13 dead and nearly three dozen wounded.

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