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Lebanon Marks Decade Since Hariri Assassination

  • VOA News

Woman mourns at grave of former Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri during the 10th anniversary of his assassination, downtown Beirut, Feb. 14, 2015.

Woman mourns at grave of former Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri during the 10th anniversary of his assassination, downtown Beirut, Feb. 14, 2015.

Ceremonies and prayers are being held Saturday in Lebanon on the 10th anniversary of the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

Hariri's son, Saad, himself a former prime minister, returned from his self-imposed exile for the occasion and spoke at a memorial service.

Rafik Hariri was killed by a massive car bomb in the capital, Beirut, along with 21 other people.

Hariri's death led to mass protests against Syria, which eventually withdrew its troops from Lebanon.

An international tribunal indicted five members of Lebanon's Shia movement, Hezbollah, for the attack. Hezbollah denied it was responsible, rejecting the charges as political, and the defendants remain at large.

In New York, the United Nations said "the secretary-general renews his condolences to the families of the victims of this terrorist attack. A decade on, the message remains that impunity will not be tolerated."

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry commemorated Hariri Friday, saying the man known as "Mr. Lebanon" gave his country hope during its "darkest days."

"He stood for peaceful change and the resolution of differences through conversations — not carnage," Kerry said.

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