MTV: STL funding on agenda of next cabinet meeting


MTV reported that the issue of funding the Special Tribunal for Lebanon ( STL) will be on the agenda of the upcoming cabinet meeting.

Hezbollah and its allies are dead against funding the Tribunal , but Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblat, PM Mikati and president Michel Suleiman are reportedly in favor of funding it due to international obligations.

Jumblatt urged Hezbollah on Nov 11 during an interview on Al-Arabiya television to allow Mikati’s government to pay Lebanon’s annual 49% share of funds to the U.N. backed court.

“We’ve heard Hezbollah describe the suspects (in the 2005 assassination of former PM Rafik Hariri) as ‘sacred’, but they must understand that those who were martyred, starting from Rafik Hariri all the way to (slain MP) Antoine Ghanem … are also ‘sacred’,” Jumblatt said .

“Why don’t they go defend themselves in court?” Jumblatt suggested, warning that “boycotting the tribunal would harm Lebanon.”

The Iranian and Syrian -backed Hezbollah brought down former PM Saad Hariri’s government on January 12 over the Special Tribunal for Lebanon’s imminent indictment.

The Special Tribunal for Lebanon issued the indictments and arrest warrants on June 30. Two of the suspects Badreddine and Ayyash are reportedly senior members of Hezbollah and played leading roles in the assassination while the other two Hezbollah members Hassan Aneissy and Assad Sabra played a supporting role in the execution of the assassination.

Lebanon had 30 days to find and arrest the suspects but Hezbollah chief Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah said on July 2 that the party would not cooperate with the tribunal.

“No Lebanese government will be able to carry out any arrests whether in 30 days, 30 years or even 300 years.” Nasrallah said.