Deadline on UN Hariri tribunal decision extended

A revised UN resolution to unilaterally establish an international tribunal to prosecute suspects in the assassination of Lebanon's former prime minister would give the Lebanese parliament a grace period until June 10 to ratify it. If the Lebanese parties do not overcome their differences by that date, the agreement between the United Nations and the government of Lebanon to establish the special tribunal would enter into force. The council is scheduled to discuss the new draft on Tuesday, and US Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, the current council president, said he expects a vote in the following days. Lebanon's Prime Minister Fuad Saniora asked the UN Security Council earlier this month to take binding action to establish the tribunal. He cited the refusal of opposition-aligned Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri to convene a session to ratify the statutes to create the tribunal that have already been approved by his government and the United Nations.