UN court orders life sentence to Hezbollah militant for the assassination of Lebanese premier Hariri
On Friday, an UN-backed court gave a life sentence to a Hezbollah member, who was convicted for the assassination of former Lebanese premier Rafik Hariri. Hezbollah refused to take any responsibility, and the judges stated that there was no proof in connection to the Shia militant group’s leaders.
Salim Ayyash, aged 57 was found guilty of Lebanon’s murder on August 18 by the Netherlands-based Special Tribunal.The Beruit port blast prompted the decline of the government which was already facing an economic breakdown because of which numerous citizens lost their jobs and savings.
Ayyash was on the run, with Hassan Nasrallah, the top of the Shiite terror group member of Hezbollah, declining to hand him over, with three more offenders who were ultimately acquitted.Lawyers in a court hearing in November stated that life imprisonment for Ayyash was the appropriate punishment, as the assassination was the most dreaded act that has happened on Lebanese soil.””The absentia trials are obviously not the ideal method of administering global justice,” Christophe Paulussen, a senior scholar at the Asser Institute in The Hague, stated to AFP.
International courts resembled “a monster without arms and legs” since they depended on states to catch suspects and couldn’t authorize orders by themselves.The UN Security Council concurred in 2007 to set up the court, commissioned as the world’s first international tribunal set up to investigate terror based crimes. It officially began in 2009, in spite of the fact that the Hariri case itself didn’t officially begin until 2014.
The court has cost around $600 million to function and has heard just four cases, two of them for contempt of court about news reports with data about secret witnesses.Rafik Hariri, a Sunni, was a very rich businessman who also served as a Prime Minister of Lebanon multiple times following the 1975-90 civil wars.His last term in office was completed in 2004, after which he adjusted himself to the opposition in the legislature.
On 14 February 2005 morning, Hariri was going in a motorcade past the St George Hotel in midtown Beirut when a bomb detonated in a van.A huge number of demonstrators onto the roads began following his demise, in dissent against the pro-Syrian government. Ayyash also faces a separate case at the court for three other deadly assaults on Lebanese legislators in 2004 and 2005, the AFP reported.