Kuwait deathrow bomber among four ‘indicted’ for Hariri murder Lebanon braces for Hezbollah backlash over Hariri case

KUWAIT CITY, July 1, (Agencies): One of the four Hezbollah men who were indicted by a UN-backed tribunal Thursday for the 2005 murder of former Lebanon premier Rafiq Hariri was serving a death sentence in Kuwait before escaping from the country in 1990 during the Iraqi invasion of the country.
Mustafa Badreddine, entered Kuwait in 1983 on a Lebanese passport under the name of Elias Saab, and had been sentenced to death for masterminding seven blasts in the country in a single day in the same year.
Badreddine is said to have entered Kuwait to attend meetings which were aimed at helping the Iranians in their war against Saddam Hussain’s Iraq. He is then said to have trained other militants on explosives and later these militants sent these explosives to various areas of Kuwait, including the American and French embassies. The resulting explosions, with the biggest one being at the American Embassy, resulted in many deaths and injuries.
The others who have been named in the indictment are Salim Ayyash, Assad Sabra and Hussein Anaissi. The whereabouts of all the four men are unknown.

Lebanon braced on Friday for a possible backlash after a UN-backed tribunal issued an indictment in the 2005 murder of ex-premier Rafiq Hariri in which four Hezbollah members are named.
Interior Minister Marwan Charbel confirmed to AFP the names of the men charged by the Netherlands-based Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) and said efforts would begin to arrest them.
He said Lebanon’s Prosecutor General Said Mirza had given him the arrest warrants early Friday.
Mustafa Badreddine, Salim Ayyash, Assad Sabra and Hussein Anaissi, whose whereabouts are unknown, are named in the arrest warrants.
Badreddine — brother-in-law of top Hezbollah operative Imad Mughniyeh who was killed in a 2008 bombing in Damascus — is suspected of having masterminded the February 14, 2005 seaside bombing that killed Hariri and 22 others.
Ayyash, who holds US citizenship, allegedly carried out the attack.
Sabra and Anaissi allegedly coordinated with Ahmad Abu Adas, a Palestinian who contacted Al-Jazeera television following the Hariri assassination to claim responsibility for the bombing.
Charbel said a meeting among all concerned security services was planned Saturday to coordinate search operations for the suspects.

“We have to address this issue calmly and wisely to preserve the civil peace,” he said. “If the situation explodes, everyone loses.”
He also pointed out that there are between 15,000 and 20,000 outstanding arrest warrants in Lebanon.
Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, an ally of Hezbollah, has called for a parliamentary vote of confidence on the country’s Hezbollah-dominated government on Monday, the state-run National News Agency reported.
Hezbollah and its allies form a slight a majority in parliament.
The parliamentary bloc of Saad Hariri, son of the slain Rafiq and head of Lebanon’s pro-Western opposition, on Friday said it would not grant the cabinet its vote of confidence over its policy statement which “in practice means the government has disclaimed Lebanon’s commitments to the STL.”
Prime Minister Najib Mikati’s government submitted Thursday to parliament its programme, which stipulates that Lebanon would respect international resolutions as long as they did not threaten the civil peace.
Hassan Nasrallah, leader of Shiite militant Hezbollah, is due to make a televised address on Saturday that will mark his first reaction to the indictment that has triggered fears of sectarian unrest in Lebanon.
Hezbollah, blacklisted as a terrorist organisation by Washington, has repeatedly warned that it would not sit idle should any of its militants be accused of Hariri’s assassination.
All eyes today are on how Mikati’s government will respond to the indictment and whether it will continue cooperating with the tribunal.
The United Nations along with the United States have called on the Lebanese government to cooperate with the tribunal, while Hariri has hailed the indictment as a “historic” moment.

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