Bulgaria Identifies 4th New Suspect in Bus Bombing
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESSFEB. 20, 2014, 9:36 A.M. E.S.T.
SOFIA, Bulgaria - A fourth attacker may have been involved in a suicide bomb
attack on an Israeli tourist bus in Bulgaria two years ago, the country's
chief prosecutor said Thursday.
The July 2012 explosion outside an airport on Bulgaria's Black Sea coast
killed five Israeli tourists, the Bulgarian bus driver and the bomb carrier,
who has never been identified. Thirty-five people were wounded. Bulgaria
already has identified two suspects, both of Lebanese origin, but neither
has been arrested.
The prosecutor, Sotir Tsatsarov, said Bulgaria's plans to press formal
charges against the two men by March would need to be delayed because
investigators have identified a third man suspected of involvement in
planning the attack. He declined to detail the man's identity or
"This does not mean that the indictment (of all three suspects) will be
postponed indefinitely, but we will need some additional time," Tsatsarov
Last year Bulgaria accused the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah of mounting
the attack. It identified two Lebanese plotters as Meliad Farah, 32, who
holds Australian citizenship, and Hassan El Hajj Hassan, 25, a Canadian
citizen. The third suspect, the bomber, was decapitated in the blast. DNA
and fingerprint analysis produced no identification matches.
Bulgaria previously has complained that Lebanon had not provided assistance
in identifying the whereabouts of either man. Tastsarov said Thursday its
diplomatic requests remain unanswered. Partly in response to the bombing,
the 28-nation European Union unanimously decided to declare Hezbollah's
military wing a terrorist organization.
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