Hariri Hit 'Political' - Indictees Remain at Large
Rafik Hariri's assassination was the directly motivated by the political aspirations of the Hizbullah terror-organization, London-based Asharq al-Awasat reported Fridah.
Four Hizbullah members were indicted for the assassination of the former Lebanese prime minister by the Special Tribunal for Lebanon on Thursday.
Quoting "reliable sources," al-Aswat said the 183-page indictment lists the reasons and political motivations behind the assassination as well as the planning, execution and cover-up stages.
Lebanon's Interior Minister Marwan Charbel confirmed Lebanon's Prosecutor General Said Mirza had given him the arrest warrants early Friday for Mustafa Badreddine, Salim Ayyash, Assad Sabra and Hussein Anaissi. The indictees whereabouts are currently unknown.
Badreddine is the brother-in-law of top Hizbullah operative Imad Mughniyeh, who died in a 2008 bombing in Damascus.
He is suspected of having masterminded the February 14, 2005 seaside bombing that killed Hariri and 22 others.
Ayyash, another senior party official who holds US citizenship, allegedly carried out the attack.
Sabra and Anaissi allegedly coordinated with Ahmad Abu Adas, a 'Palstinian' who contacted Al-Jazeera television following the Hariri assassination to claim responsibility for the bombing.
al-Aswat noted the suspects' names match the names noted in recent Lebanese media reports.
Hizbullah's al-Manar television said on Thursday the indictments show the tribunal seeking his killers "is politicized".
Hariri's son and outgoing prime minister of Lebanon, Saad Hariri, responded to the reports by saying that "justice has won; now no one can evade responsibility".
"The murderers' time is coming to an end. This is an historical moment and a victory for Lebanon, international justice, and the souls of the fallen," he said in a statement published by his office.
AFP reported that Lebanon was given 30 days to arrest the suspects.
"We have to address this issue calmly and wisely to preserve the civil peace," Charbel said ahead of a meeting with heads of Lebanon's security services on Saturday. "If the situation explodes, everyone loses."
Tensions over the STL between Hizbullah and Saad Hariri's son ultimately led to the collapse of Lebanon's previous government.