Jumblatt: Delaying STL indictment is no solution


President Bashar al-Assad met on Sunday the leader of the Lebanese Progressive Socialist Party MP Walid Jumblatt, according to SANA

SANA also reported that the talks during their meeting “dealt with the latest developments in the Lebanese arena and the importance of unifying efforts of all the Lebanese parties to maintain calm and national unity in facing the challenges.”

Earlier today Jumblatt said that Syria and Saudi Arabia are currently considering ways to resolve the crisis over the indictment by the special Tribunal for Lebanon ( STL) and stressed that delaying the indictment means delaying the problem.

Tension escalated in Lebanon following reports that the Special Tribunal for Lebanon will soon issue its indictment into the 2005 assassination of Lebanon’s former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. Last July, Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said that the tribunal is “an Israeli project” that will indict Hezbollah members. Nasrallah accused Israel of being behind Hariri’s assassination but refused to provide the evidence to STL to support his claim. Hezbollah and its March 8 allies have been calling for the abolition of STL.

Jumblatt is concerned that should the court indict Hezbollah members, it could lead to a Shiite-Sunni strife, but others disagree since Hezbollah is the only armed militia in Lebanon.

Yesterday former Lebanese PM Salim el Hoss ruled out any Shiite- Sunni strife in Lebanon over the STL indictment, saying the “Sunnis and Shiites are one people .. there never was and there will never be a strife between them.”

Similarly Lebanese Forces leader samir Geagea said yesterday “Hezbollah should respond to the indictment through lawyers and the gathering of evidence”, , adding that “it is not the indictment that will destroy the country, but rather those who say that it will cause destruction.”

The indictment by the STL may reportedly be delayed till first quarter of 2011.