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Sunday, April 06, 2008

Syrian investigator replaced for claiming Syrians killed Imad Mugniyah

A few days ago, I reported that a Syrian 'investigation' will 'officially' blame Israel's Mossad for the February assassination of Hezbullah terrorist Imad Mugniyah. While there have been suspicions all along that Syria itself had something to do with the killing, this is about the most concrete piece of information I have seen yet.
Head of Syrian military intelligence Maj.-Gen. Assef Shawkat has been put under heavily-guarded house arrest following the assassination of Hizbullah terror chief Imad Mughniyeh, former Syrian vice president Abdel Halim Khaddam was quoted as saying Sunday.

Khaddam, who was a close ally of former Syrian president Hafez Assad, told the Lebanese newspaper Al-Mustaqbal that the arrest was made after Shawkat claimed the probe he was conducting into Mughniyeh's death showed that the assassins came from Syria.

"Following this revelation, Shawkat was removed from the investigation which was transferred to [Syrian President Bashar Assad's cousin] Hafez Mahlof, who mulled over who accuse for the assassination," said Khaddam.

Khaddam asserted that Assad therefore used the assassination to bring about the dismissal of Shawkat, his brother-in-law, and the appointment of Mahlof.

Khaddam went on to say that Syria's attempts to put the blame for killing Mughniyeh on Arab intelligence services were "stupid" and "naive."

"The Syrian regime tried to exert pressure on several Arab countries, to blackmail them and force them to participate in the Arab Summit in Damascus," claimed Khaddam.

The former Syrian vice president noted that Mughiyeh managed to hide for 25 years from foreign intelligence agencies, from his associates in Hizbullah and from his neighbors. "During that time, he was subjected to Iranian and Syrian monitoring, so how is it possible that Arab agencies were involved in the assassination."

On Sunday, Syria is set to announce the results of the probe into Mughniyeh's death.

The Ba'ath Party expelled Khaddam from Syria in 2005 after he blasted Syrian President Bashar Assad's "political blunders" in dealings with Lebanon. He has since been living in exile in Europe.

In 2006, Khaddam announced that he was forming a "government in exile" and predicted the end of Assad's rule by the end of 2006. He also said he believed that Assad ordered the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.
Wouldn't it be nice if they kill each other off? Heh.


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