Syria denies joint probe with Iran

Syrian official says Iranian deputy FM's declaration of joint probe into Mughniyeh killing is baseless.

Imad Mughniyeh 224 88 (photo credit: FBI Website)
Imad Mughniyeh 224 88
(photo credit: FBI Website)
Syria has denied Iranian reports that the two countries will conduct a joint investigation into the assassination of top Hizbullah commander Imad Mughniyeh, who was killed by a car bomb in the Syrian capital on Tuesday night. Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Ali Reza Sheik Attar announced the joint probe on Friday, according to Iran's official news agency. But an unnamed Syrian official dismissed the report as "totally baseless" and said Damascus would conduct the investigation alone, Syria's state-run news agency reported late Friday. Hizbullah and its Iranian backers have accused Israel of killing Mughniyeh, and Hizbullah's leader Hassan Nasrallah vowed in a eulogy to the slain terrorist on Thursday that his group would retaliate against Israeli interests anywhere in the world. Israel has denied any role in the killing, and Syria has not said who it believes was behind the blast. Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki met with senior Syrian officials in Damascus on Thursday and Friday to discuss Mughniyeh's assassination. Attar said Friday that Iran and Syria agreed to the joint investigation during Mottaki's visit.