Syria probe may take 2 years to finish

Mehlis tells UNSC Syria still not fully cooperating with Hariri probe.

December 14, 2005 10:19
2 minute read.
mehlis with lebanese minister of justice

mehlis 298.88 ap. (photo credit: AP)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Syria still is not fully cooperating with a probe into the assassination of Lebanon's former prime minister, and investigators would need two more years at this rate, the chief of the inquiry told the UN Security Council on Tuesday. Detlev Mehlis acknowledged that Syria had permitted five high-ranking officials to be interviewed in Vienna, and he later said it was too early to say if Syria was in violation of a Security Council resolution that threatened "further action" unless Syria cooperates. "It remains to be seen whether the Syrian cooperation will be in full and without any conditions," Mehlis told the council as he presented his latest progress report on the probe. He later added: "We definitely are not seeing full cooperation because that would be cooperation in a timely manner." Mehlis' statements apparently did not persuade diplomats on the 15-nation council to seek sanctions against Damascus. Instead, the council was considering two Lebanese requests: to widen the probe into former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri's death to include other political killings; and to form an international tribunal that would try suspects in his death. France circulated a draft resolution late Tuesday that would extend Mehlis' probe, which had been scheduled to end Dec. 15, by another six months as he has requested. After hearing Mehlis' briefing, the council was sharply divided. Some, like Britain and France, expressed a general willingness, while others, including Algeria, were more cautious. "Some support it. Some said we need to study it further and some kept silent," Algeria's UN Ambassador Abdallah Baali said. US Ambassador John Bolton, one of Syria's toughest critics, said US officials were still considering how best to ensure that Syria cooperates with the probe. He did not rule out sanctions, but he did not focus on them. "The government of Syria responds unfortunately only to pressure, at least that's our experience to date, so we are considering what additional pressure we will bring to bear," Bolton said.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

July 20, 2019
Saudi king approves hosting U.S. troops to enhance regional security


Cookie Settings