Cyprus terrorist on trial admits to being a member of Hezbollah

Published February 21st, 2013 - 07:56 GMT
Lebanon's Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah speaking during a televised address from an undisclosed location on February 16.
Lebanon's Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah speaking during a televised address from an undisclosed location on February 16.

A man on trial for his part in plotting to attack Israeli tourists in Cyprus has, through his lawyer, admitted to being a member of the Lebanese militant group, Hezbollah, AP reported on Thursday.

Hossam Taleb Yaacoub's defense lawyer told local media on Wednesday that his client, who is half Lebanese, half Swedish, said he had been given a "mission" by Hezbollah to record flight times and bus routes that Israeli tourists were taking.

The admission comes just weeks after the Lebanese militant group were accused of masterminding the attacks on Israeli tourists in Bulgaria. Hezbollah leader, Hassan Nasrallah, strongly denied any involvement in the Burgas bombings that killed five Israelis and one Bulgarian. 

Although the Cyprus attacks never actually took place, police were convinced that Yaacoub, 24, was part of a plot to do so. 

Yaacoub, who was arrested last July, initially faced 17 terrorism-related charges, of which he pleaded not-guilty to eight. However, the prosecutors for the case have since dropped any reference to terrorism without explanation. 

Cyprus has not officially designated Hezbollah as a terrorist organization. 

 


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