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Thursday, February 17, 2005

ASSASSINATION OF LEBANON'S PRIME MINISTER HARIRI UNIFIES OPPOSITION TO SYRIAN OCCUPATION AND DOMINATION

"A killing alters the landscape: Assassination of former Lebanese PM unifies those seeking an end to Syrian political domination"
By Mohamad Bazzi, Middle East Correspondent - February 16, 2005

Beirut, Lebanon - "The assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri will irrevocably change the Syrian-Lebanese relationship and might hasten a Syrian military withdrawal from Lebanon, analysts say. Hariri's killing has already emboldened the Lebanese opposition, which is using renewed international attention on Lebanon to advance its demand for a pullout of the 15,000 Syrian troops here and an end to Damascus' political domination. The opposition lost its most important figure in Hariri, a billionaire and construction tycoon who led Lebanon for 10 years and oversaw the rebuilding of Beirut. But the opposition also gained new momentum and a sense of unity.

"The opposition has not been weakened by Hariri's assassination," said Hazem Amin, an editor at the pan-Arab newspaper Al-Hayat. "It is now stronger than ever...." entire article

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