Sinister role of Iran, Hezbollah in 9/11 terror attacks exposed

Updated 19 March 2016
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Sinister role of Iran, Hezbollah in 9/11 terror attacks exposed

NEW YORK: There is mounting evidence against Iran and Hezbollah proving their first-hand involvement in the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11 2001 that killed thousands of US citizens, Asharq Al-Awsat reported.
Asharq Al-Awsat has exclusively attained and published six documents New York courthouse Judge George Daniels used for the verdict which fines Iran billions of dollars in compensation for the families of the victims of the attack.
The verdict also ordered compensation for insurance companies that bore fiscal losses due to the 9/11 attacks.
George Daniels condemned Iran for facilitating the execution of the terrorist attacks that affected both New York and Washington.
Documents procured by Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper emphasize Iran smoothing out the route for Al-Qaeda terrorists moving to campgrounds in Afghanistan for training, which paved the way for the 9/11 attacks.
Moreover, documents exposed that top Hezbollah figure Imad Mughniyeh — assassinated in 2008 — had visited the perpetrators in October 2000 and had arranged their flight to Iran with new passports before dispatching them for the attack.
Iranian administration had also given orders for border checkpoints and observatories to stamp the passports of the terrorist attackers, in a move to facilitate their advance.
Al-Qaeda persistently had a supporting lifeline provided by the Iranian government, which also provided the terrorist organization — according to the documents — with both financial backing and safe haven to terrorist top leaders after the Sept.11 attacks.
US and western media outlets have circulated information about a New York courthouse penalizing the Iranian President Rouhani’s administration with $10.5 billion remuneration.
However the plaintiff commission against Tehran’s government confirmed to Asharq Al-Awsat that reimbursements Iran has been ordered to pay are to exceed $21 billion, shedding light on the fact that the frozen Iranian dough to be released by the US government will not cover the demanded compensation.
The trial revealed that each of Osama Bin Laden, Ayman Al-Zawahiri — current leader of Al-Qaeda — Mughniyeh and other Iranian officials met in Khartoum to establish an alliance supporting terrorism.
A courthouse judiciary source, requesting anonymity, revealed that six people and bodies are accused in the case filed against Iran.
They are Supreme Leader of Iran Ali Khamenei, former Iranian intelligence minister Ali Fallahian, deputy commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and Brig. Gen. Mohammed Baqir Al-Qader.
Administrational bodies among the accused are the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and its special operations division, the Quds Force.


Police official: Short-circuit likely caused Notre Dame fire

Updated 45 min ago
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Police official: Short-circuit likely caused Notre Dame fire

  • Authorities have said Notre Dame was in danger of going up in flames before fire crews stopped it from spreading into a tower belfry

PARIS: Paris police investigators think an electrical short-circuit most likely caused the fire at Notre Dame Cathedral, a police official said Thursday as France paid a daylong tribute to the firefighters who saved the world-renowned landmark.
A French judicial police official told The Associated Press that investigators made an initial assessment of the cathedral Wednesday but don’t have a green light to search Notre Dame’s charred interior because of ongoing safety hazards.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to speak by name about an ongoing investigation, said the cathedral’s fragile walls were being shored up with wooden planks.
Earlier in the afternoon, French President Emmanuel Macron held a ceremony at the Elysee Palace to thank the hundreds of firefighters who battled the fast-moving for nine hours starting Monday evening. Authorities have said Notre Dame, which dates from the 12th century, was in danger of going up in flames before fire crews stopped it from spreading into a tower belfry.
Fire responders also rescued many of the important relics and works of art inside the cathedral.
“We’ve seen before our eyes the right things perfectly organized in a few moments, with responsibility, courage, solidarity and a meticulous organization,” Macron said. “The worst has been avoided.”
Macron said the firefighters will receive an Honor Medal for their courage and devotion.
As the ceremony took place, investigators continued seeking clues to what sparked the fire. The huge cathedral, including the spire that was consumed by flames and collapsed, was in the initial stages of a lengthy restoration.
Investigators so far believe the fire was accidental, and are questioning both cathedral staff and workers who were carrying out renovations. Some 40 people had been questioned by Thursday, according the Paris prosecutor’s office.
Fire officials warned that the building remains unstable and extremely dangerous, including for the construction workers who rushed to secure an area above one of the rose-shaped windows and other vulnerable sections of the fire-damaged structure.
Workers using a crane were removing some statues to lessen the weight on the cathedral’s fragile gables, or support walls, and to keep them from falling, since the section lacked the support of the massive timber roof that burned up in the devastating blaze.
Police, citing “important risks” of collapse and falling objects, officially closed Thursday a large swath of the island in the Seine River on which Notre Dame sits. The area had been unofficially blocked off since the fire.
Paris City Hall also was holding a ceremony in the firefighters’ honor Monday afternoon, with a Bach violin concert, two giant banners strung from the monumental city headquarters and readings from Victor Hugo’s “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.”
Remarkably, no one was killed in the fire, which began during a Mass, after firefighters and church officials speedily evacuated those inside.
Among the firefighters honored Thursday was Paris fire brigade chaplain Jean-Marc Fournier, who says he was falsely credited with helping salvage the crown of thorns believed to have been worn by Jesus at his crucifixion.
The chaplain said a team of rescuers broke the relic’s protective covering and an official who had the secret code to unlock the protection finished the job. Fournier told France Info on Thursday that his own team arrived on the heels of the salvaging and praised the action “to preserve this extraordinary relic, this patrimony of humanity.”
However, Fournier told the daily Le Parisian that he himself was able to save the most precious thing for Catholics from the fire, the cathedral’s consecrated hosts. The paper said he climbed on altars to remove large paintings, but that he felt especially proud of another personal salvaging operation: “to have removed Jesus” from the Cathedral.
For Catholics, consecrated hosts are the body of Christ.
Among others honored was Myriam Chudzinski, one of the first firefighters to reach the roof as the blaze raged. Loaded with gear, they climbed hundreds of steps up the cathedral’s narrow spiral staircase to the top of one of the two towers. She had trained at the site for hours for just this moment.
“We knew that the roof was burning, but we didn’t really know the intensity,” she told reporters. “It was from upstairs that you understood that it was really dramatic. It was very hot and we had to retreat, retreat. It was spreading quickly.”
The building would have burned to the ground in a “chain-reaction collapse” had firefighters not moved as rapidly as they did to battle the blaze racing through the building, José Vaz de Matos, a fire expert with France’s Culture Ministry, said Wednesday.
An initial fire alert was sounded at 6:20 p.m., as a Mass was underway in the cathedral, but no fire was found. A second alarm went off at 6:43 p.m., and the blaze was discovered already consuming the roof.
Macron wants to rebuild the cathedral within five years — in time for the 2024 Summer Olympics that Paris is hosting — but experts say the vast scale of the work to be done could easily take 15 years, since it will take months, even years, just to figure out what should be done. Nearly $1 billion has been pledged for the cathedral’s restoration.
Benedicte Contamin, who came to view the damaged cathedral from afar Thursday, said she’s sad but grateful it’s still there.
“It’s a chance for France to bounce back, a chance to realize what unites us, because we have been too much divided over the past years,” she said.