LEIDSCHENDAM, Netherlands, Aug. 23 (UPI) — A tribunal investigating the 2005 slaying of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri said it was looking into a series of other attacks on Lebanese leaders.
The U.N.-backed Special Tribunal for Lebanon recently released detailed information about four suspects with Hezbollah allegedly tied to the 2005 assassination of Hariri in a massive bombing in Beirut.
The tribunal’s pre-trial judge announced attacks on three other individuals fell under its jurisdiction. The tribunal said it was investigating the attempted assassinations of former Telecommunications Minister Marwan Hamadeh in 2004, and former Deputy Prime Minister Elias el-Murr and Community Party leader George Hawi in 2005.
The tribunal in a Tuesday statement said the investigations marked a “new chapter” in the tribunal’s work.
“The Lebanese judicial authorities retain jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute the other attacks not yet found to be connected with the Hariri case and not yet deferred to the Special Tribunal for Lebanon,” it added.
The tribunal’s decision stems from its statute giving it the authority to investigate cases of similar nature to the Hariri slaying.
Hezbollah complains the tribunal is part of an Israeli plot to discredit the Shiite movement, pointing to Israeli involvement in Lebanese telecommunications sector to back its claims.