Army Maj. Nidal Hasan, who confessed to killing 13 people and wounding 32 others at a military base in Fort Hood, Texas, in 2009, was sentenced to death on Wednesday by a military jury.

Last Friday, that same jury found Hasan guilty of the 45 charges he faced - 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 of attempted premeditated murder - in what was the deadliest attack at a military installation in U.S. history.

The sentence was handed down by unanimous decision. Had one juror dissented, Hasan would have been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Hasan said in a brief opening comment at the start of the court-martial that he had "switched sides" in what he claimed was a U.S. war against Islam.

The defendant waived his right to legal counsel and opted to represent himself during the 22-day trial, in which Hasan did not call a single witness nor present any evidence showing extenuating circumstances that could have averted a capital sentence.

The defendant also opted not to make a closing statement.

During a pre-trial hearing in June, Hasan, a U.S.-born Muslim, said he launched the Nov. 5, 2009, attack to protect the Taliban leadership in Afghanistan, and in particular its leader, Mullah Omar.

Prosecutors called more than 100 witnesses, including survivors of the shooting spree, who said Hasan began firing at soldiers who were at the base awaiting deployment to Afghanistan.

Hasan fired more than 200 shots and left several victims permanently disabled.

The rampage was brought to an end when base police shot Hasan in the back, leaving him paralyzed from the chest down. EFE