[JURIST] Lebanese Defense Minister Elias al-Murr announced Thursday that Lebanon will ask the UN Security Council to extend for another six months its investigation into the murder of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri [UN materials; JURIST news archive]. UN chief investigator Detlev Mehlis was scheduled to deliver his final report on the investigation on December 12, after which he planned to leave his position. Ibrahim Gambari, the UN under-secretary for political affairs stated that he expected the Security Council to extend the investigation beyond the deadline, even if Mehlis leaves his post. Reuters has more.
On Wednesday, Syria's UN Ambassador Fayssal Mekdad also demanded further investigation into the Hariri murder after Syrian witness Hosam Taher Hosam, who provided testimony in the investigation, accused [JURIST report] the Hariri family and Lebanese officials of offering him money to implicate Syria in Hariri's murder. Hosam also recanted the testimony he gave in Mehlis' investigation. In response, Mehlis accused the Syrian government [Reuters report] of using Hosam as a "Communist-like propaganda tool." He also asserted that Hosam's false testimony did not undermine his investigation. Reuters has more.