The Lebanese military court on Thursday pressed charges against seven people allegedly involved in the attack on a convoy of UN Interim Force soldiers in al-Aaqbiya, South Lebanon, in which an Irish peacekeeper was killed.
The charges were confirmed to L'Orient-Le Jour by a source at the military court, who did not offer any details on the suspects' identities.
Charges will also be pressed against any person whose involvement in the attack can be proven by the courts, according to the source.
On Dec. 25, Hezbollah handed over a suspect to the authorities. A judicial source told AFP that, for the time being, that man is the only person detained in the frame of the investigation, but army intelligence told L'Orient-Le Jour that four other individuals were wanted for their involvement in the incident.
"Mohammad Ayyad has been charged with killing the Irish soldier and attempting to kill his three comrades by shooting them with a machine gun," said the judicial official who requested anonymity.
The judge also charged "six fugitives ... with making threats with an illegal weapon, destroying the UNIFIL vehicle and intimidating its passengers," the same source said.
The attack — which occurred on Dec. 14 — claimed the life of Irish peacekeeper Sean Rooney, 23, and injured three of his fellow soldiers.
Hezbollah, which dominates the region and whose relationship with the UN force remains in flux, denied any involvement in the incident.
However, L'Orient-Le Jour obtained credible information that two Hezbollah officials were involved in the attack.
A source close to the investigation told L'Orient-Le Jour that seven bullets pierced the armed UN vehicle that was bound for Beirut via an unusual route.
According to our sources, a Jeep Cherokee followed the UNIFIL vehicles from the village of Saksakiyeh to the entrance of al-Aaqbiya, where the convoy split into two groups, one taking a road inside the town and the other continuing its journey via the highway.
Residents interviewed by the army intelligence all said they did not know where the shots that killed the young soldier came from.