Timeline: Special Tribunal for Lebanon
Chronology of Key Events
(Not an Official Document of the United Nations)
- 14 February 2005 : Former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri and 22 others are killed in a bomb attack in Beirut . The Secretary-General and the Security Council both condemn the act. (S/PRST/2005/4)
- 7 April 2005 : The UN Security Council adopts resolution 1595 (2005) establishing the International Independent Investigation Commission.
- 13 December 2005 : The Lebanese Government requests the United Nations to establish a tribunal of an international character to try all those alleged responsible for the attack of 14 February 2005 in Beirut that killed the former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri and 22 others. (S/2005/783)
- 15 December 2005 : In response to the request of the Lebanese Government, the Security Council adopts resolution 1644 (2005) in which it requests the Secretary-General to help the Lebanese Government identify the nature and scope of the international assistance needed to try those eventually charged with the terrorist attack that killed former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri and 22 others before a tribunal of an international character. (Para 6 Res 1644 (2005))
- 29 March 2006 : The Security Council adopts resolution 1664 (2006), in which it welcomes the report by the Secretary-General of 21 March 2006 (S/2006/176) submitted pursuant to resolution 1644 (2005) and requests the Secretary-General to negotiate an agreement with the Government of Lebanon aimed at establishing a tribunal of an international character based on the highest international standards of criminal justice.
- 15 November 2006 : The Secretary-General submits his report to the Security Council on the outcome of the United Nations' negotiations with the Lebanese Government, which took place between May and July 2006, on the establishment of the Special Tribunal. (S/2006/893)
- 24 November 2006 : The President of the Security Council transmits a letter to the Secretary-General (S/2006/911) , in which the members of the Security Council: welcome the conclusion of the negotiations with the Government of Lebanon; express satisfaction at the Agreement annexed to the report of the Secretary-General, including the Statute; and invite the Secretary-General to proceed, together with the Government of Lebanon, with the final steps for the conclusion of the Agreement.
- 23 January and 6 February 2007 : The Agreement between the United Nations and the Lebanese Republic of the establishment of a Special Tribunal for Lebanon is respectively signed by the Government of Lebanon and the United Nations. (SG/SM/10871)
- 14 May 2007 : The Prime Minister of Lebanon writes to the Secretary-General informing him that all domestic options for the ratification of the instruments establishing the Special Tribunal have been exhausted and that a majority of Parliamentarians has expressed its support for the Tribunal, and asks the Secretary-General to present to the Security Council his request that the Special Tribunal be put into effect as a matter of urgency. (S/2007/281)
- 30 May 2007 : The Security Council adopts resolution 1757 (2007), in which, acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations, the Council decides that the provisions of the annexed document to resolution 1757 (2007) - including its attachment would enter into force on 10 June 2007, unless the Government of Lebanon had notified the United Nations in writing that the legal requirements for entry into force had been complied with before that date. Should the annexed document enter into force as a result of the resolution, the Security Council requested the Secretary-General, in coordination, when appropriate, with the Government of Lebanon, to undertake the steps and measures necessary to establish the Special Tribunal in a timely manner.
- 10 June 2007 : The provisions of the Annex and the Statute of the Special Tribunal enter into force as no notification is received from the Government of Lebanon that the legal requirements for entry into force of the Annex to Resolution 1757 (2007) and its attachment had been complied with before 10 June 2007. (SG/SM/11035 –L/3117)Back to Top
Steps undertaken to date by the Secretary-General pursuant to Security Council resolution 1757 (2007):
• 21 December 2007 : Representatives of the United Nations and of the Netherlands sign the Headquarters Agreement that will enable the seat of the Special Tribunal to be based in the Netherlands . The Agreement is consequently submitted to the Parliament of the Netherlands for approval. On 8 November, the Dutch authorities provided the UN Secretariat with detailed information on the building that has been identified as the most adequate location for the seat of the Tribunal. (SG/SM/11347)
• 10 July 2007 : The Government of the Lebanese Republic forward to the Secretary-General , in a sealed envelope, a list of twelve candidates proposed for judicial appointments by the Lebanese Supreme Council of the Judiciary, as set forth in article 2, paragraph 5 (a) of the Annex.
• 1 August 2007 : The Legal Counsel sends a letter to all Member States, on behalf of the Secretary-General, inviting them to consider submitting candidates for appointment as judges of the Special Tribunal no later than 24 September 2007. The names of thirty-seven international candidates are subsequently put forward.
• Mid-October 2007 : The Secretary-General establishes a Selection Panel after indicating his intention to the Security Council in accordance with article 2, paragraph 5 (d) of the Annex. The panel is composed of Judge Mohamed Amin El Mahdi, who served as judge of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia from 2001 to 2005, Judge Erik Møse, currently serving as judge of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, where he was President of the Tribunal from 2003 to 2007, and Mr. Nicolas Michel, the Legal Counsel of the United Nations. (SG/SM/11035)
• October/November 2007 : Consultations are held with the Government of the Lebanese Republic in accordance with article 2, paragraph 5 (c) of the Annex, which provides that “the Government of the Lebanese Republic and the Secretary-General shall consult on the appointment of judges”.
• 4 December 2007 : After having selected and interviewed the candidates, the Selection Panel makes its recommendations to the Secretary-General, which he accepts. (SG/SM/11347)
• From June to September 2007 : Informal consultations are held with experts in the field with a view to securing candidates for consideration for the position of Prosecutor.
• October 2007 : The Selection Panel (the same Panel that selected the Judges) selects and interviews candidates for the position of Prosecutor.
• Early November 2007 : The Government of the Lebanese Republic is consulted on the appointment of the Prosecutor, pursuant to article 3, paragraph 1 of the Annex.
• 8 November 2007 : The Selection Panel recommends that Mr. Daniel Bellemare, of Canada , be appointed as the Prosecutor, and the Secretary-General accepts the recommendation.
• 14 November 2007 : The Secretary-General appoints Mr. Bellemare to succeed Mr. Brammertz as the Commissioner of the Investigation Commission. On the same day, pursuant to his authority under article 3 of the Annex, the Secretary-General appoints Mr. Bellemare as the Prosecutor of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon . Mr. Bellemare will, however, commence his official duties as the Prosecutor of the Special Tribunal at a later date in keeping with the provisions of the Annex. (S/2007/669)
3- The Registrar
• 13 November 2007 : The Legal Counsel sends a letter to Member States inviting them to submit nominations for appointment as Registrar of the Special Tribunal no later than 14 December 2007. Pursuant to that letter, a total of 14 nominations are put forth by States.
• 10 March 2008: The Secretary General appoints Mr. Robin Vincent (United Kingdom) as the Registrar of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon. Mr. Vincent will commence his duties at a date to be determined. (SG/A/1124)
4- The Head of the Defence Office
• January 2007 : The process of recruiting an independent Head of the Defence Office is initiated.
• 4 September 2007 : The Secretary-General informs the Security Council in his report of 4 September 2007 (S/2007/525) that it is projected that the Special Tribunal will require a global estimate of $35 million for the first 12 months of its operation (exclusive of costs related to the preparation of the premises), $45 million for the second 12 months, and $40 million for the third 12 months. Should a second Trial Chamber be created during the second or third years of the Special Tribunal, an additional financial requirement to fund it is estimated at $8 million.
• 13 February 2008 : The Secretary-General announces the establishment of the Management Committee of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon . The Management Committee is composed of the main donors to the Tribunal and is tasked, inter alia, to provide advice and policy direction on all non-judicial aspects of the operations of the Special Tribunal and review and approve its annual budget. (SG/SM/11412)
• 26 July 2007 : The UN Secretariat creates a Trust Fund to receive contributions for the establishment and activities of the Special Tribunal. On 5 December 2007, the States that have made significant contributions or pledges to the funding of the Special Tribunal unanimously agreed that funds should be managed directly by the Tribunal, as is the case with the Special Court for Sierra Leone , rather than through a United Nations trust fund.
• 8 October 2007 : The Secretary-General sends a letter to Member States inviting them to contribute to the trust fund.
• As of 29 January 2008 : The total amount deposited in the Trust Fund covers 64.3% of the projected estimate for the first year of operation ($35 million), including a contribution from the Government of Lebanon that amounts to 49% of the first year global estimate. Current pledges, in addition the amount deposited, bring the percentage to 83% of this global estimate.
• 13 February 2008 : The Secretary-General announces that he has received indications that expected contributions to the Special Tribunal will meet the budgetary requirements for the establishment and first twelve months of operations of the Tribunal. (SG/SM/11412)
E - Transition from the Investigation Commission to the Special Tribunal
• November 2006/January 2007 : A series of measures are taken and consultations held between the Secretariat and the International Independent Investigation Commission (IIIC) to ensure that there is a coordinated transition from the activities of IIIC and the activities of the Office of the Prosecutor of the Special Tribunal.Back to Top