Hariri Tribunal Issues Arrest Warrants

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BEIRUT, Lebanon, Aug. 17 (UPI) — The U.N.-backed tribunal investigating the 2005 assassination of Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri said it has evidence implicating Hezbollah.

Judge Daniel Fransen of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon based in the Hague Wednesday disclosed details of indictments accusing four Lebanese suspects, some with ties to Hezbollah, the Lebanese daily The Daily Star said.

The court issued arrest warrants for Mustafa Amine Badreddine, Salim Jamil Ayyash, Hussein Hassan Oneissi and Assad Hassan Sabra, the daily said.

Israel Radio said the four had fled to Iran to escape prosecution. The report said Baddedine, a senior Hezbollah official, coordinated and planned the assassination.

The indictment said Badreddine “served as the overall controller of the operation,” the Star said.

Ayyash coordinated the assassination team “which was responsible for the physical preparation of the attack,” the Star said, quoting the indictment.

Oneissi and Sabra “had the task of preparing the false claim of responsibility, which served to identify the wrong people to investigate, in order to shield the conspirators from justice,” the indictment said.

“All four accused played important roles in the attack on 14 February 2005 and, therefore, all four bear criminal responsibility for the results of the attack,” the indictment said.

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah has denied any involvement in the death of the former prime minister.

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