Lebanon cabinet approves Hariri tribunal amidst political uncertainty

[JURIST] Lebanon's cabinet approved a UN draft proposal for an international judicial tribunal to try suspects in the February 2005 assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri [JURIST news archive], but six pro-Syrian cabinet members have resigned since Sunday, possibly rendering the cabinet decision invalid. Lebanon's constitution [text] requires that the cabinet include representatives from all Lebanese political factions when making decisions. The other 18 cabinet members, however, approved the tribunal plan, satisfying the constitutional requirement that two-thirds of the cabinet must support an action for it to be legitimate. The UN submitted the international tribunal proposal [JURIST report] to Lebanon last week, and now Lebanon will return the draft to the UN Security Council for final authorization.

Previous reports by the UN's Hariri investigatory commission [UN materials] implicated Syrian officials [JURIST report] in the assassination, accomplished in a massive explosion on the Beirut waterfront killed Hariri and 22 others. The UN is authorized to help Lebanon establish a tribunal to oversee prosecutions in the case under UN Security Council Resolution 1644 [text]. CNN has more. Reuters has additional coverage.



 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.