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Tuesday, September 26, 2006 

Brammertz: no idea who killed Hariri

UN investigator Serge Brammertz has released his third report into the killing of former Lebanese Prime Minister Serge Brammertz.

He says it is still not clear who did it. But he is very close to having enough evidence for an international trial. He praised Syria for being "generally co-operative" with his work.

Look at the contrasts: the last time Brammertz released a report, he said exactly the same thing, Syria has been "generally co-operative". US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton said Syria needs to do more, they aren't doing enough, they have something to cover up.

This time, Bolton made no attempt to string Syria up - his comments were quite neutral, highlighting Brammertz's claim that a trial would follow soon. The absence of criticism of Syria is deafening. Is there something going on behind the scenes in the Bush administration? It comes on the same day that there are reports Israel and Syria secretly talked during the war on Lebanon.

Going back to this report - Brammertz says they've found new leads, and that existing assumptions of guilt (Syria?) may be unfounded: "The commission has identified a considerable number of new leads for investigation relating to the crime scene, its
vicinity and the immediate perpetration of the crime, and has begun investigative and analytical work on each one them."

In particular, they've found evidence a suicide bomber may have carried out the attack (Al Qaeda?). But he does claim that Hariri was watched for a number of days before the killing, suggesting a level of intelligence only available to a state.

Brammertz says his team submitted 11 formal requests to the Syrian government "seeking information and documentation about certain individuals and groups".

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