Hezbollah `not concerned` about UN probe into Hariri murder

The UN had dismissed data provided by Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah.

Last Updated: Sep 04, 2010, 10:42 AM IST

Beirut: Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah on Friday said a UN investigation into the murder of Lebanese ex-premier Rafiq Hariri did "not concern" him, because it had dismissed data provided by his militant group.

"We have said that the tribunal and its prosecutor do not concern us and subsequently we are not concerned with answering the questions or requests of the prosecutor," Nasrallah said in a televised speech to mark the Iranian-inspired Quds (Jerusalem) Day.

"Weeks ago we said the resistance feels that it is being targeted, and we proposed a few ideas and revealed some evidence," said Nasrallah, who has accused Israel of the 2005 murder of Hariri.

"The prosecutor commented on this evidence by saying... it was insufficient," Nasrallah said.

On August 09, Nasrallah produced several undated clips of aerial views of various areas in Lebanon that he said were intercepted from unmanned Israeli surveillance drones. The clips included footage of the site of the Hariri assassination, shot several years before the murder.

The Lebanese government on August 17 submitted a copy of Hezbollah`s alleged evidence to the UN-backed Special Tribunal for Lebanon, an international investigation into the February 14, 2005 bombing that killed Hariri and 22 others in Beirut, in response to a request by office of prosecutor Daniel Bellemare.

But Bellemare`s office said the evidence was incomplete and called for any remaining material to be submitted without delay.

"We gave what evidence we have to Lebanese jurisdiction based on the request of Lebanese jurisdiction," Nasrallah said today.

"If this jurisdiction has any questions, we are ready" to cooperate, he added.

"But if this jurisdiction is just a mailbox between us and the prosecutor, then we are not ready."

Syrian-and Iranian-backed Hezbollah, which fought a deadly 2006 war with Israel, is rumoured to be implicated in the tribunal`s pending indictment.

Nasrallah has warned against pointing to Hezbollah in the assassination, labelling the tribunal an "Israeli project”.

The Hariri murder triggered an international outcry and led to the withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon in April 2005 after a deployment of almost three decades.

The killing has been widely blamed on Syria, but Damascus has consistently denied involvement.

PTI