Lebanon begins freeing Hariri suspects

Judge orders release of generals held for 4 years for alleged involvement in killing of former Lebanon PM.

rafik said hariri 224.88 (photo credit: AP [file])
rafik said hariri 224.88
(photo credit: AP [file])
Authorities in Lebanon have begun releasing four generals held for four years on suspicion of involvement in the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri after an international judge ordered them released. Judge Daniel Fransen of the UN backed tribunal ordered the Lebanese generals freed after prosecutors said there was insufficient evidence to justify their continued detention. Two of the men were met by cheering supporters outside their homes. Two other motorcades left the Beirut prison where they were being held but it was not immediately clear if the other two men were also released. The pro-Syrian generals were detained in 2005 on suspicion of involvement in the Beirut bombing that killed Hariri and 22 others that year. Their freedom leaves the international tribunal trying the case with no suspects in custody, and is also a boost for pro-Syrian factions in Lebanon before June parliamentary elections.