(photo credit: AP)
much-anticipated televised speech, Hizbullah head Hassan Nasrallah on
Monday night presented what he called proof that Israel was behind the
assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri.
The Foreign Ministry dismissed Nasrallah's comments as "ridiculous lies" in a statement Tuesday.
Hizbullah running scared
unlikely to go to war'
September 13, 1993, the date of the signing of the Oslo accords, Israel
stories to convince former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri that
planned to kill him,” Nasrallah said, according to a Walla news report
said he spoke to Syrian President Bashar Assad a couple
of weeks before Hariri’s assassination, and that Assad told him –
Western sources – that the world wanted to see Syrian troops leave
“That is the
reason Israel killed Hariri,” Nasrallah
“Israel wanted to get Syria out of Lebanon.”
As proof of his
theory, Nasrallah produced a tape of a man named Ahmed Nasrallah, who
arrested in 1996 for allegedly spying for Israel. “I met someone who
Rafik Hariri and I told him that Hizbullah wants to kill him (Hariri),”
was heard saying in the tape, referring to an apparent attempt to turn
The Hizbullah chief, according to Walla, said the
alleged spy escaped to “occupied Palestine” and was still there,
enlisting Lebanese to collaborate with Israel.
Nasrallah’s speech comes
amid growing expectations that the international tribunal investigating
assassination will hold Hizbullah culpable.
A senior Israeli official
dismissed Nasrallah’s charges as laughable.
“The international community,
the Arab world and most importantly the people of Lebanon all know that
accusations against Israel are simply ridiculous and stem from
fears that the investigation will point to his organization,” the
In the same
speech Nasrallah mentioned a 1997 incident in which 12 IDF naval
commando soldiers were killed on a secret mission in Lebanon.
said that Hizbullah knew that the IDF ships were approaching, and set up
a trap for them.
"We assumed that Israel was going to act. Our
people waited a few weeks, and on one of the nights, the commando
soldiers came...and fell into the trap that we prepared," Nasrallah
said. He presented photographs taken from an unmanned IAF aircraft,
which Hizbullah obtained before attacking the commando.