Hezbollah denies involvement after indictments in UN peacekeeper killing

Private Sean Rooney was killed last December when the UN Interim Force in Lebanon was attacked

An Irish UN peacekeeper stands next to the coffin of his comrade Pvt. Sean Rooney, who was killed near the southern town of Al-Aqbiya. AP
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Hezbollah has said there is "no justification" for linking it to last year's killing of an Irish peacekeeper.

Lebanon's military court charged five alleged Hezbollah members with the killing of Private Sean Rooney last December, when their UN Interim Force in Lebanon vehicle was attacked near the village of Al Aqbiya.

The village is a stronghold of the militant group.

Ten days later, Mohammad Ayyad, a man suspected of shooting and killing the Irish soldier, was handed over to authorities by the Iran-backed group.

"There is no justification for the judicial official to mention the group's name," a Hezbollah official told AFP following the charges on Thursday.

A 30-page indictment written by judge Fadi Sawan, the investigating judge in the military tribunal for the case, reportedly accuses five people of "forming a gang to commit a crime" and "intentional homicide".

The indictment does not state any group affiliation, but a judicial official told AFP there was evidence in the case that showed links to the group.

Updated: June 02, 2023, 1:31 PM