Lebanon’s minister of Industry Pierre Gemayel has been assassinated near Beirut. Authorities say gunmen opened fire on Gemayel’s convoy as it passed through the Christian Sin el-Fil neighbourhood in Beirut. Gemayel, 34, an outspoken critic of Syria is said to have died of his wounds in hospital. The country is currently embroiled in a political crisis, with the anti-Syrian ruling majority pitted against the pro-Damascus opposition. The parliamentary majority leader Saad al-Hariri is quoted as saying “the hand of Syria” is behind the death.