Hezbollah: We have evidence linking Israel to Hariri assassination
Ma'an report comes amid claims that a UN tribunal intends to indict members of the militant group in the 2005 killing.
Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah is to reveal evidence implicating Israel in the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri, a spokesman for the militant group told the Palestinian news agency Ma'an on Sunday.
A United Nations tribunal was established in 2007 to try suspects in the 2005 assassination of Rafik Hariri, father of current premier Saad Hariri. The elder Hariri was killed in a massive bomb blast in Beirut, along with 20 other people. His allies have accused Syria and its followers in Lebanon of being behind the murder, a charge Damascus has repeatedly denied.
Late last month, Nasrallah indicated that he had been informed that the UN tribunal would indict some Hezbollah members, saying that "out of his keenness to ensure national unity, [Lebanese Premier Saad] Hariri told me that the UN tribunal indictment will be issued and will accuse some members of Hezbollah."
Speaking to Ma'an on Sunday, Hezbollah spokesman Ibrahim Mousawi said that the group's leader would reveal "thunderous news" in a press conference scheduled for Monday, presenting what he called "comprehensive, revealing conclusive information" linking Israel to Hariri's 2005 assassination.
Referring to rumors of an upcoming indictment of Hezbollah members, Nasrallah said last week that his organization rejected "reject the idea that Hezbollah members might be indicted," noting that the indictment does not accuse Syria.
The Hezbollah chief warned that "there's a new scheme that targets the resistance [Hezbollah], Lebanon and the region through the Special Tribunal for Lebanon."
Nasrallah in March confirmed that UN investigators had interrogated members of his Syrian- and Iranian-backed Hezbollah movement.
Last month, the Lebanese daily Al Akhbar quoted Syrian President Bashar Assad as saying that if a finger is pointed at Hezbollah for being behind the assassination, this may result in the destruction of Lebanon.
Assad said that in the past the court had blamed Syria, a claim later proven to have been baseless, but nearly destroyed Lebanon and the entire region, and now the same scenario is being repeated against Hezbollah.
According to a Lebanese judicial source, the tribunal will be issuing at least two rounds of the indictments starting from September and around the end of this year.
Lebanese media reports indicated that in the first round UN prosecutor Daniel Bellemare will indict "three to five members of Hezbollah and in the second round about 20 with various ranks including some key officials."
The reports added that Bellemare was informed by Lebanese military leaders in an informal way that the Lebanese army would not arrest any members of Hezbollah party if they should be indicted.
A report in the German news magazine Der Spiegel last year revealed a link between Hezbollah and the Hariri assassination.
The reports about the indictments against Hezbollah have raised fears in Lebanon that the security situation will deteriorate, and Premier Hariri on Thursday attempted to assure the Lebanese that there would not be a crisis or sedition in the country.
"There are political disputes - but nothing will happen," Hariri said.