Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
Mr. President, let me now turn to Lebanon. We echo the Secretary-General's statement of support for the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and his call to all parties to refrain from any interference or influence in its work.
We welcome the recent announcement by the Prosecutor for the Tribunal that he has filed an indictment relating to the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri and 22 others. This represents an important step toward ending the era of impunity for political murder in Lebanon and achieving justice for the Lebanese people.
Mr. President, we urge that Lebanon's constitutional process be followed in selecting its next government, and we encourage all parties to avoid threats or actions that could cause instability in Lebanon or the region. We urge this Council and the international community to remain firm in its support for Lebanon's sovereignty and independence, resolute in its commitment to all Security Council resolutions related to Lebanon, and vigilant to threats to international peace and security.
We commend the efforts of France, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and other key international and regional actors working to maintain calm in Lebanon and ensure that the Tribunal's work continues unimpeded. We support French President Sarkozy's intention to form a contact group to help resolve the political crisis in Lebanon. We support a political outcome that reduces tension and allows the Lebanese government to return to the business of the people, without undermining the Special Tribunal for Lebanon. The Lebanese people should not have to choose between justice and stability. Like all nations, Lebanon deserves both.