Detlev Mehlis, the UN investigator, has not named any Syrian officials for the murder of Rafiq Al-Hariri.
But he did blame ‘Syrian and Lebanese elements’.
He said the act “could not have been taken without the approval of a top-ranked Syrian security official and could not have been further organised without the collusion of their counterparts in the Lebanese security services”.
Worryingly, he accused the Syrian government of trying to mislead the investigation. He says Foreign Minister Farouq Ash-Sharaa lied in a letter to the investigation.
But no Syrian official has been implicated – the worry was that a figure close to the President would be blamed, implicating the President. Mehlis found no evidence that Bashar or any of his inner circle were to blame.
But the report will provide ample ammunition to those who want to cripple Syria with sanctions.
One commentator said, Mehlis didn’t please anyone.
Mehlis has now turned the investigation over to Lebanese officials. He did not call for a renewal of his mandate, but said a lot of work still needs to be done.