Hizbullah: US controlled Hariri probe to 'light a fuse'
ICJ tribune files first indictment in 2005 Lebanese PM assassination, which reportedly names Hizbullah, Ayatollah Khaminei; Israeli officials: Indictment unlikely to change anything in the region.
Hizbullah blamed the US for the indictment in the Hariri assassination tribunal, which was submitted on Monday.
According to the Hizbullah-aligned television station Al-Manar, "Washington pushed the indictments in order to light the fuse that will blow up the bridges that were built in order to find a solution" after the Lebanese government collapsed last week.
Of course, thats been the mantra thus far: Its the fault of the U.S. Whats new there. But progress is continuing as the indictments are now officially filed into record:
The UN tribunal set up to prosecute the assassins of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri says its prosecutor has filed the first indictment in the case, nearly five years after the deadly truck bombing.
Details of suspects named and the charges against them have not been released.
Tribunal registrar Herman van Hebel said in a statement Monday prosecutor Daniel Bellemare sent the indictments to Judge Daniel Fransen, who must decide whether to confirm or dismiss them or ask for more evidence.
Now the rumors are circulating:
Lebanese news sources reported that the indictments focus on Hizbullah members that planned and executed the assassination.
Iranian leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has reportedly been indicted for giving the instructions to kill Hariri in February 2005, AFP reported.
One source said that a finger pointed at the Khamenei – although it would be a major news story – would unlikely change international attitudes toward Iran significantly, because the country is already "in the world's dog house."
Revelation of an Iranian involvement would also unlikely change anything inside Lebanon for the simple reason everyone there knows very well the closeness of the Iranian-Hizbullah ties, the sources said.
Israeli officials continued to carefully watch the events in Lebanon unfurl, but careful not to comment on the developments so as not to be seen as intervening in one war or the other.
So at this point, it appears that Judge Daniel Fransen, who now has the indictments in his possession, will determine whether to confirm or dismiss them, or to ask for more information. It will be interesting to see what he will do, and his determinations could have big ramifications for the region.
What happens next is anyone's guess. Like everyone else, we'll be watching for developments.