Lebanese president receives Hariri tribunal accord

The Cabinet sent to the president Monday a draft accord on a tribunal to try the alleged killers of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, taking another step in the struggle between pro-Western and pro-Syrian forces in Lebanon. President Emile Lahoud, a pro-Syrian, is expected to decline to endorse the agreement, which would set up a UN backed court that would sit outside Lebanon. The tribunal has become a weapon in the battle by Hizbullah and its Shiite ally, the Amal Movement, to increase their share of the Cabinet from five to eight seats, which would give them veto powers. Six Cabinet ministers, including all the Shiites, resigned from the Cabinet earlier this month shortly before the government gave initial approval to the tribunal.