Lebanon's Hariri tribunal hopes for 2012 trial

February 2, 2012 15:41

BEIRUT - The UN-backed Special Tribunal for Lebanon said on Thursday it hoped to start in 2012 the trial in absentia of four Hezbollah suspects, indicted over the killing of Lebanon's former prime minister Rafik Hariri.

Warrants for the arrest of the four men were issued by the tribunal in June, but Lebanon later told the court it had been unable to track any of them down.

The powerful Shi'ite Muslim group Hezbollah has denied any role in the 2005 car bombing which killed Hariri, a billionaire Sunni Muslim politician, and 21 other people and said it would refuse to allow any of the suspects to be arrested.

"We still hope we can start the trial in earnest in 2012," tribunal spokesman Marten Youssef told a news conference.

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