Agreement to Fund STL to be Reached ahead of Suleiman’s U.S. Visit
An agreement over overdue funds owed to the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, totaling $32 million, is expected to be reached before President Michel Suleiman travels to New York City on September 18 to take part in the United Nations General Assembly, reported al-Liwaa daily on Friday.
The funds could be made through a budget surplus or treasury advance, revealed Prime Minister Najib Miqati’s sources.
They added: “Despite the fact that the government factions have not yet revealed their cards over funding the STL, the current political signals indicate that the funds will be provided even if the previous government was responsible for the failure to make them.”
The daily reported that Hizbullah had informed Miqati that it prefers to discuss the STL funding at cabinet before any step is taken in this matter, especially since a treasury advance only needs the president, premier, and finance minister’s approval and not the government’s.
Al-Liwaa noted that the issue of Lebanon’s funding of the STL had been brought up in the country since the head of the STL Defense Office Francois Roux’s visit to the prime minister.
Lebanon is obligated to pay a 49 percent share of the STL’s funds.
A debate has been sparked in Lebanon over the payment, especially in light of Hizbullah’s repeated assertions that it will not cooperate with the tribunal.