4 Hezbollah members to be tried in Lebanon killing

Feb 1, 2012, 7:43 PM

Associated Press

BEIRUT (AP) – The special court investigating the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri said Wednesday it will try four Hezbollah members indicted in the case in absentia.

The Netherlands-based Special Tribunal for Lebanon did not say when the trial will start.

Hariri was killed along with 22 others by a suicide truck bomb on Feb. 14, 2005, in one of the most dramatic political assassinations in the Middle East. A billionaire businessman, he was at the time Lebanon’s most prominent politician.

Hezbollah strongly denies the accusations and considers the court a Western tool to strike at the militant group.

The suspects were indicted last year, but Hezbollah has refused to arrest them and send them for trial at the U.N.-backed tribunal.

The STL said in a statement the Trial Chamber examined documents from the tribunal’s prosecutor and the Lebanese Prosecutor-General. They detail the steps taken by the Lebanese authorities to apprehend the accused.

The STL’s statement said the efforts included multiple attempts by the Lebanese authorities to find the accused at their last known residences, places of employment, family homes and other locations.

“The Trial Chamber concluded that all reasonable steps have been taken to secure the appearance of the accused and to notify them of the charges against them,” the statement said.

The four suspects include Mustafa Badreddine, a Hezbollah commander who is also the suspected bomb maker for the 1983 bombing of the U.S. Marines barracks in Beirut that killed 241 Americans.

The other suspects are Salim Ayyash, also known as Abu Salim; Assad Sabra and Hassan Oneissi, who changed his name to Hassan Issa.

The U.N. investigation into the killing of Hariri and the degree to which the Lebanese authorities should cooperate with it has become one of the most divisive issues in Lebanese politics in recent years.

In November, Hezbollah and its allies, who hold a majority in the Cabinet, were expected to block the funding for the court during a vote, but Prime Minister Najib Mikati said he already had secured Lebanon’s $36 million share of funding.

___

Bassem Mroue can be reached on twitter at
http://twitter.com/bmroue

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

World News

A fisherman watches smoke rise after Russian forces launched a missile attack on a military unit in...
Associated Press

Russia’s Black Sea Fleet headquarters hit by drone strike

An explosive device carried by a makeshift drone blew up Sunday at the headquarters of Russia's Black Sea Fleet on the Crimean Peninsula.
14 days ago
Medical syringes are seen with 'Monkeypox' sign displayed on a screen in the backgound in this illu...
Associated Press

Monkeypox declared a global emergency by UN health agency

The expanding monkeypox outbreak in more than 70 countries is an “extraordinary” situation that qualifies as a global emergency.
22 days ago
Chinese paramilitary policemen march in front of the Japanese embassy where the Japanese flag is fl...
Associated Press

Japan’s ex-leader Shinzo Abe assassinated during a speech

TOKYO (AP) — Former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was assassinated Friday on a street in western Japan by a gunman who opened fire on him from behind as he delivered a campaign speech — an attack that stunned a nation with some of the strictest gun control laws anywhere. The 67-year-old Abe, who was Japan’s […]
1 month ago
Firefighters hose down a burning car after a strike hit a residential area, in Kramatorsk, Donetsk ...
Associated Press

Russia taking ‘operational pause’ in Ukraine, analysts say

Analysts say Russia may be taking an "operational pause" in eastern Ukraine to reassemble forces for a significant offensive.
1 month ago
Prime Minister Boris Johnson enters 10 Downing Street, after reading a statement in London, Thursda...
Associated Press

One scandal too many: British PM Boris Johnson resigns

LONDON (AP) — Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced his resignation Thursday after droves of top government officials quit over the latest scandal to engulf him, marking an end to three tumultuous years in which he tried to bluster his way through one ethical lapse after another. Months of defiance ended almost with a shrug as […]
1 month ago
Ukrainian servicemen carry the coffin with the remains of Army Col. Oleksander Makhachek during a f...
Associated Press

As Ukraine loses troops, how long can it keep up the fight?

ZHYTOMYR (AP) — As soon as they had finished burying a veteran colonel killed by Russian shelling, the cemetery workers readied the next hole. Inevitably, given how quickly death is felling Ukrainian troops on the front lines, the empty grave won’t stay that way for long. Col. Oleksandr Makhachek left behind a widow, Elena, and […]
2 months ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Dr. Richard Carmona

Great news: Children under 5 can now get COVID-19 vaccine

After more than two years of battle with an invisible killer, we can now vaccinate the youngest among us against COVID-19. This is great news.
(Courtesy Condor)...
Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines shows passion for destinations from Sky Harbor with new-look aircraft

Condor Airlines brings passion to each flight and connects people to their dream destinations throughout the world.
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?
4 Hezbollah members to be tried in Lebanon killing