German criticises Lebanese terrorism inquiry

14th November 2006, Comments 0 comments

14 November 2006, Hamburg (dpa) - Germany's federal prosecutor-general, Monika Harms, has criticised Lebanon, telling a German newspaper that she is still waiting for evidence from a man who is in custody in Beirut for allegedly planting bombs on German trains this year. Germany narrowly avoided its first major attack by Islamists when the two bombs on separate trains failed to explode on July 31. It arrested one chief suspect and Lebanon detained the other, Jihad Hamad. Harms told the newspaper Bild am So

14 November 2006

Hamburg (dpa) - Germany's federal prosecutor-general, Monika Harms, has criticised Lebanon, telling a German newspaper that she is still waiting for evidence from a man who is in custody in Beirut for allegedly planting bombs on German trains this year.

Germany narrowly avoided its first major attack by Islamists when the two bombs on separate trains failed to explode on July 31. It arrested one chief suspect and Lebanon detained the other, Jihad Hamad.

Harms told the newspaper Bild am Sonntag, "We are still waiting for the transcript of his interrogation by the Lebanese police so that we can compare it to our own findings. The problem is that we have no treaty on police cooperation with Lebanon."

Asked if she believed Beirut was deliberately being obstructive, she said, "It could certainly go more smoothly. However we are in talks with the authorities there and are making a bigger effort to get the transcript."

German police were present during some of the interrogations, and this week, Germany's NDR public television broadcast a transcript of its own officially permitted interview with Hamad in the Lebanese jail.

Harms said she expected the lack of the documents to delay her inquiry, adding that the evidence against the alleged co-conspirator, Youssef Hajdib, who is also Lebanese, was "not too bad."

She rejected speculation that Hamad had been tortured, saying German police witnessed some of the interrogation in Beirut and one of her staff attended his appearance before a Lebanese magistrate.

DPA

Subject: German news

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