New York

27 December 2013

Statement Attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General on the assassination of Dr. Mohamed Chatah (Lebanon)

The Secretary-General condemns in the strongest terms the car bombing in Beirut today that killed at least six people, including former cabinet minister Mohamed Chatah, and injured scores more.  He conveys his condolences to the families of the victims and wishes a speedy and full recovery to those injured.  The Secretary-General notes that, as Finance Minister in the government of Prime Minister Saad Hariri and as foreign policy advisor to Prime Minister Fouad Siniora, Dr. Chatah had served as a tireless voice for tolerance, diversity, and moderation.  In the Secretary-General's view, his death is a tremendous loss for Lebanon and a reminder of the need to end impunity. 

The Secretary-General is deeply troubled by the recurring acts of terrorism in Lebanon which pose a severe threat to the country’s stability and national cohesion.  He welcomes the efforts of the Lebanese authorities and security forces to address the security challenges and to protect the country from the impact of the crisis in neighbouring Syria.  He urges all Lebanese parties to act with restraint at this time and to support the institutions of the state, and particularly the security forces, as they seek to prevent further acts of terrorism.

The Secretary-General underlines the need for the perpetrators of this crime to be brought to justice.  He reiterates the determination of the international community to support Lebanon’s security and stability.