[JURIST] The UN Security Council [official website] voted unanimously Wednesday to allow UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan to open formal negotiations on the establishment of a tribunal to try suspects in the February 2005 assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri [JURIST news archive]. The UK- and US-sponsored Resolution 1664 [text] calls on Annan to negotiate an agreement with the Lebanese government on creating the tribunal and help determine what sort of international support will be required to bring to justice those responsible for the assassination.
In a report to the Security Council last week, Annan recommended [JURIST report] that a mixed tribunal with Lebanese and international involvement would best serve justice in the case. Informal talks between UN and Lebanese officials on the establishment of such a tribunal have been underway since January [JURIST report]. A UN commission investigating Hariri's assassination [UN backgrounder] has suggested that top Syrian officials were involved in the killing, but Syria has thusfar denied any involvement. The UN News Centre has more.