Amid LEbanon unrest, UN tribunal expected to blame Hezbollah for Hariri murder
The international tribunal investigating the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri is expected to file indictments on Monday against those it believes are responsible for the murder.
Lead prosecutor Daniel Bellemare will bring the indictments before Judge Daniel Fransen for a preliminary review. Fransen was appointed to the post by the International Court of Justice at The Hague.
The tribunal is expected to argue that Hezbollah agents, including some of the more senior figures in the Shi'ite Muslim organization, were involved in the 2005 assassination.
Fransen will likely review the documents over a period of six to 10 weeks and then decide on the legal steps to be taken.
So what does this mean, exactly?
The indictments are considered to be a historic event for Lebanon, considering the serious accusations expected to be directed against the country's most powerful group and militia. The tribunal's conclusions are expected to deal a severe blow to the group which, since 1992, has worked to present itself as a patriotic Lebanese organization.
The indictments will be presented at the same time that a new prime minister is appointed in Lebanon. Hariri's supporters maintain that Lebanese President Michel Suleiman will assign him the task of forming a new government, since he has a majority in parliament.
At this time it is also unclear how Hezbollah will respond to the indictments which are expected to point directly to Mustafa Badr al-Din, son-in-law of the former Hezbollah strongman Imad Mughniyeh, who likely also had a role in the Hariri assassination.
Hariri tribunal results expected; Nasrallah lashes out
It is unclear as to whether or not these indictments will be made public; the articles did not specify this aspect. Perhaps it is assumed that they will. Either way, today could prove to be very interesting as these indictments are issued. We'll be watching closely.