Friday, April 17, 2009
The Special Tribunal for Lebanon is investigating the bomb blast that killed the country’s former Prime Minister, Rafiq Hariri, and 22 others in February 2005. This week, the Pre-Trial Judge for the Special Tribunal, Daniel Fransen, ordered the prosecutor to file reasons to continue holding persons of interest in that investigation. The prosecutor must file those reasons by April 27, 2009. The judge stated that any individuals arrested or detained have the right to be brought promptly before a judge to rule on their detention status. A U.N. press release says also that the judge also noted that the Hariri case raised difficult issues of terrorism, and that the judicial record relating to it was particularly complex and voluminous.
The Special Tribunal for Lebanon is a located in The Hague. It took over from the Beirut-based International Independent Investigation Commission (IIIC) in the beginning of March 2009. The investigation of the murders continues under the guidance of Prosecutor Daniel Bellemare, who also headed the probe while the case rested with the IIIC. A trial will take place when he has sufficient evidence.