Nasrallah. Preemptive steps?
Photo: AFP
Photo: Reuters
At the heart of the storm: Rafik Hariri
Photo: Reuters

Nasrallah: Hariri probe 'will not weaken resistance'

Hezbollah leader slams UN investigation, accuses Israel of interfering in in order to sully group's name

Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah said Sunday the UN team investigating the killing of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri would not "discourage the resistance."


Nasrallah also pointed an accusing finger at Israel, saying Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government is interfering in the UN investigation in order to sully his organization's name.


Hariri was murdered by a car bomb in Beirut in February 2005. His anti-Syrian stance led to suspicions that Damascus was involved, but the investigation has since branched in other directions. According to reports in the West, the UN team is expected to recommend that senior Hezbollah leaders stand trial.


During a speech, Nasrallah referred to various reports which have already threatened to undermine stability in Lebanon. He directed rhetorical questions at the team leader, Daniel Bellemare, asking if there was a precedent for trying a person in absentia at the International Court, and claiming no such precedent existed.


He also asked if evidence from someone claiming the right to silence had ever been used, or evidence in writing from someone who had not been present at court.

Hezbollah members listen to Nasrallah's speech (Photo: AFP)


The Hezbollah leader said the investigation into the killing was a sensitive issue, and that therefore the team was missing its mark.


"When you're handling the fate of a state, does the investigation of the last five years show justice?" he asked. "The court is arranging the law in a way that will make it easier for it to make a predetermined political decision. This is the weakest court in the world."


'Nobody safe from Israeli wiretapping'

Nasrallah also blamed Israel for being politically involved in the investigation.


"The new development is the entry of Israel," he said. "I'm not talking about items in the Israeli newspapers, but things senior Israelis have said about being involved in Lebanon. I ask, if Israel says it has strong connections with the investigation, is this justice?"


Hariri's killing in Beirut (Archive photo: Reuters)


The Hezbollah leader warned his supporters that the UN investigation poses a tangible danger to the resistance against Israel.


"The court was designed to weaken Lebanon, its future and the resistance," he said. "If someone is counting on the court to affect our morale, our courage and our will, he is mistaken."


Therefore, he said, Hezbollah's rivals in Beirut should reach an agreement with the organization regarding how to cope with the investigation's findings, before it is too late.


"In Israel, they are expecting and hanging their hopes on these indictments," he said. "We do not fear… these expectations. But after the indictments are submitted, we will have lost the opportunity to reach an agreement. So I call on everyone not to waste time and not to buy time until the indictments are submitted."


Nasrallah also took the opportunity to warn his supporters that Israel's intelligence services are operating everywhere.


"Nobody is safe from wiretapping," he said. "Whether it's coded or not, Israel hears everything. That's the case with SMS messages too. It's been proven, and the Lebanese military intelligence has also discovered this to be the case."



פרסום ראשון: 11.28.10, 19:28
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