UN Will Try Accused Assassins of Ex-Lebanese PM

Divided Security Council OKs tribunal
By Colleen Barry,  Newser Staff
Posted May 31, 2007 10:15 AM CDT
Lebanese demonstrators carry heart-shaped pictures of assassinated Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – A UN tribunal will try suspects in the 2005 assassination of the ex-PM of Lebanon, raising fears of worsening unrest in the unstable country. Five members abstained from yesterday's Security Council vote, signaling a serious rift. And Syria, which has been implicated in the suicide truck-bomb attack that killed Rafik Hariri, warned against the establishment of the tribunal.

PM Fouad Siniora backed the vote, which the opposition-controlled parliament had opposed. Hariri's assassination helped drive Syria out of Lebanon after 29 years of occupation, and Damascus has maintained that Syrian suspects should be tried in their own country. Syria's UN ambassador called the vote "something that goes against the interests of the Lebanese people and Lebanon as a whole." (Read more Lebanon stories.)