BEIRUT (Reuters) – Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has rejected a UN request to be interviewed as part of an inquiry into the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri last year, diplomatic sources said on Saturday.
Syria told the UN commission that the request to meet Assad violates the country’s sovereignty, they said.
A spokeswoman for the UN investigation confirmed Syria has replied to the request to meet Assad and Foreign Minister Farouq al-Shara, among other officials, but refused to elaborate.
Diplomats had said earlier this month that Syria had agreed to allow the commission to meet Shara.
Assad, in an interview with Egyptian weekly newspaper El Osboa, hinted that he would be immune from questioning by UN investigators.
The inquiry has implicated senior Syrian officials and their Lebanese allies in the February 14 killing of Hariri and 22 others in Beirut.