[QODLink]
Middle East
Beirut probes tribunal staff attack
Lebanon says it is investigating incident that appeared to target officials from UN inquiry into prime minister's death.
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2010 02:23 GMT
Southern Beirut has been the scene of protests against the UN's al-Hariri tribunal [Reuters]

Lebanon has told the United Nations that it is investigating an attack last week on UN officials involved in the inquiry into the killing of Rafiq al-Hariri, Lebanon's assassinated ex-prime minister.

Diplomats said Lebanon had made the undertaking at a closed session of the UN's 15-member Security Council on Friday.

Nawaf Salam, the Lebanese ambassador, later told journalists that at the meeting "it was my pleasure to inform the Security Council that the judicial authorities in Lebanon have initiated an investigation into the incident".

The so-called attack occurred on October 27, when two officials from the UN-backed tribunal team were forced to leave a doctor's clinic in southern Beirut, a stronghold of Hezbollah, by a crowd of women.

The two men had made an appointment to review files at the clinic.

Troubled tribunal

The incident came amid rising tensions over the tribunal, which was set up in 2007 to investigate the 2005 assassination of al-Hariri.

Unconfirmed reports say that charges are likely to be made against members of the Hezbollah.

Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, the Hezbollah leader, has said investigators from the Netherlands-based body are passing information to Israel and has called on Saad al-Hariri, the Lebanese prime minister and Rafiq's son, to repudiate the tribunal

The Syrian- and Iranian-backed Hezbollah is represented in the Lebanese government and there are fears that indictments by the tribunal - a development expected early next year - could spark fresh turmoil in Lebanon.

Bernard Kouchner, the French foreign minister, arrived in Lebanon on Friday hoping to ease tensions.

The French foreign ministry had said Kouchner would urge "restraint" and reaffirm Paris's support for the government.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
French Jews and Muslims say recent National Front victories in mayoral races reflect rising xenophobia.
Western fighters have streamed into the Middle East to help 'liberate' Arab countries such as Syria and Libya.
The Pakistani government is proposing reform of the nation's madrassas, which are accused of fostering terrorism.
Weaving and handicrafts are being re-taught to a younger generation of Iraqi Kurds, but not without challenges.
Featured
Survivors of Bangladesh garment factory collapse say they received little compensation and face economic hardship.
As Iraq prepares to vote, deadly violence is surging. But at the site of one bomb attack, people insist life must go on.
French Jews and Muslims say recent National Front victories in mayoral races reflect rising xenophobia.
Up to 23,000 federal prisoners could qualify for clemency under new Justice Department initiative.
After years of rapid growth, Argentina is bracing for another economic crisis as inflation eats up purchasing power.
join our mailing list