Lebanon’s Siniora had said ‘no’ to Malta hosting UN tribunal on Hariri assassination
Former Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora had expressed “unease” at a United States proposal in 2007 to have Malta host the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) which was set up by a United Nations Security Council Resolution to prosecute those responsible for the 2005 assassination of Rafik Hariri in Beirut.
A US embassy cable signed by Ambassador Jeffrey D. Feltman in Beirut in May 2007, revealed details of a meeting between US assistant secretary for international organisation affairs Kristen Silverberg with Lebanon’s then Prime Minister Fouad Siniora.
Silverberg had pressed Siniora on the site selection to host the tribunal and had touted Malta and Cyprus as possible venues.
But the US cable goes on to say that “concerning site selection, Siniora expressed unease over placing the tribunal in either Cyprus or Malta.”
According to the cable, Siniora said “that Syrian intelligence has numerous assets in Cyprus, while the security establishing the court in Malta may be compromised as well, but by Libyan agents.”
The Lebanese Prime Minister had indicated to the US that placing the new tribunal in a secure European city would be preferable.