UN leader Ban Ki-moon on Wednesday named Norman Farrell of Canada as new head of the international investigation into the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafiq Hariri.
Farrell takes over as chief prosecutor for the Special Tribunal for Lebanon from another Canadian, Daniel Bellemare, whose three year mandate ended Wednesday. The court has charged four Hezbollah members over the assassination.
Farrell, 53, had been deputy prosecutor at the international tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. He has also worked for the International Committee for the Red Cross in the Balkans and Ethiopia.
"The secretary general once again reiterates the commitment of the United Nations to the efforts of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon to uncover the truth regarding the terrorist attack" that killed Hariri and 22 others, said UN spokesman Martin Nesirky.
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Ban wants to "send a message that impunity will not be tolerated."
The UN last week extended the mandate of the tribunal for another three years, in another rebuff to the opposition to its activity expressed by Hezbollah.
The tribunal, set up by the UN Security Council at the request of a past Lebanese government, announced in February that it will put four Hezbollah members on trial even though they have not yet been detained.
Warrants have been issued for Salim Ayyash, Mustafa Badreddine, Hussein Anaissi and Assad Sabra. But authorities in Lebanon, where the government is dominated by the militant Hezbollah, have failed to arrest them.
Ban also appointed Daniel David Ntanda Nsereko of Uganda as an international judge of the Appeals Chamber of the Special Tribunal.