Lebanon politicians divided over Hezbollah evidences that Israel killed Hariri

09:16, August 11, 2010      

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Lebanese politicians were divided on Tuesday over evidences presented by Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah which he said prove that Israel is behind the assassination of former prime minister Rafik Hariri in 2005.

Nasrallah presented on Monday audio and visual material, including a footage he said was taken from Israeli Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) that was monitoring Hariri just before his murder.

He also said that an Israeli spy was present at the crime scene one day before the assassination that took place on Feb. 14, 2005.

Nasrallah's claims made in a press conference came amid rising tension as reports said the international tribunal into the assassination would accuse members of Hezbollah.

Nabil De Freij, a member of Almustaqbal parliamentary bloc led by Hariri's son and current Prime Minister Saad, said Nasrallah " gave an analysis without proof."

De Freij said the video footage which Nasrallah displayed during his press conference "were unconvincing to the public."

Former MP Fares Soaid said that Nasrallah failed to convince the Lebanese with the evidence he had submitted. "If Nasrallah aimed at pushing official Lebanese parties to postpone the Special Tribunal for Lebanon's indictment, he had failed, since local parties are unable to control the issuance of the STL's indictment, " he said.

The UN special tribunal was established on March 1, 2009, to try suspects that planned, facilitated and executed the assassination of Hariri in Beirut.

But Change and Reform bloc MP Salim Salhab told local MTV television that the information Nasrallah revealed will have political and legal impacts in the near future.

Obtaining such data in the first place demonstrated Hezbollah's technological abilities, Salhab said.

For its part, Development and Liberation bloc MP Hani Qobeissy told the Voice of Lebanon (VOL) radio station that based on the information revealed by Nasrallah, Israel may be responsible for the assassinations that happened in Lebanon since 2005.

"Nasrallah's information must be taken into consideration in order to investigate whether Israel was involved in these (subsequent) assassinations," Qobeissy said.

Lebanon should avoid the Israeli plan to cause sedition in the country, he added.

Meanwhile, spokesperson of the STL Fatima Issawi is preparing a response to the presentation Nasrallah made.

The Central News Agency noted on Tuesday that it will exclusively publish Issawi's response which is expected to be ready within the next 24 hours.



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