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Lebanese PM: Country Will Not Be Intimidated by Gemayel's Killers


Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Siniora says Lebanon will not be intimidated by the killers of anti-Syrian politician Pierre Gemayel.

Mr. Siniora spoke hours after the Christian Cabinet minister was gunned down outside Beirut Tuesday.

Witnesses say the attackers rammed their vehicle into Gemayel's car and riddled it with bullets. He later died at a hospital.

Prime Minister Siniora called for unity, and said the country will not allow criminals to dictate its future. He said Lebanon must stand united for the creation of an international tribunal to try suspects in last year's assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

Gemayel, 34, was the latest in a number of anti-Syrian politicians who have been assassinated in Lebanon over the past two years. A United Nations inquiry has implicated Syrian officials in the Hariri killing.

Syrian condemned Gemayel's assassination in a message carried on the official Syrian news agency SANA.

Gemayel's father, former Lebanese President Amin Gemayel, appealed for calm.

In Washington, U.S. Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns denounced the attack as an act of terrorism.

Earlier this month, six pro-Syrian Cabinet members resigned to back the Shi'ite militant group Hezbollah's demand for veto power. Hezbollah has called for an end to Mr. Siniora's government.

Gemayel is from a family of prominent politicians that, besides his father, includes his grandfather, as well as his uncle, Bashir Gemayel, who was assassinated in 1982 shortly after being elected president.

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