“Together we witness a distinctive historic moment in the political, judicial, security, and moral life of Lebanon,” said Saad Hariri, the former prime minister and son of the slain Rafik who has been living in Paris in recent weeks – reportedly because of death threats. “Lebanon has paid the price of this moment, in decades of killings and assassinations without accountability. It is time to put a final end to this shameful series.”
There was no immediate comment from Hezbollah on the release of the indictments. Hezbollah is expected to take a publicly aloof attitude to the announcement.
On Friday, Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, Hezbollah’s leader, said in a speech that the tribunal was no longer of any consequence to his party. “We are through with the issue of the tribunal since a long time,” he said. “We are not concerned with any scenario concerning the tribunal.”
Media leaks over the past two years claimed that the tribunal had discovered an alleged connection between Hezbollah and the assassination of Hariri, who died in a massive van bomb explosion in downtown Beirut in February 2005, a blast that also claimed the lives of 22 other people.