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    Moscow does not oppose international Hariri tribunal - ministry

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    MOSCOW, March 31 (RIA Novosti) - Russia is not against the establishment of an international tribunal on the case of Lebanon's former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri's assassination last year, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement Friday.

    "The Russian side is in principle not against the establishment of an international tribunal on the Hariri case, to bring to justice the individuals guilty of killing the former Lebanese prime minister," the statement said.

    "Like many other states, we believe that the new body should be established on the basis of an agreement between the UN and Lebanon," the Russian Foreign Ministry said. "We proceed from the assumption that this judicial body should be financed on the basis of voluntary contributions by UN member countries."

    Rafik Hariri was killed in a truck bombing on February 14, 2005. His death prompted Syria to withdraw its troops, which had been deployed in Lebanon for nearly 30 years, under intense international pressure.

    The UN Security Council set up a commission to investigate the killing, which has since recommended the arrest of four senior security officials in Syria's capital Damascus, and implicated officials in Beirut. Syria has strongly denied any involvement in the killing.

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