Statement by Global Affairs Canada on Special Tribunal for Lebanon’s verdict in Ayyash et al. case


August 18, 2020 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

Global Affairs Canada today issued the following statement:

“Today’s guilty verdict by the Special Tribunal for Lebanon [STL] concerning Salim Ayyash in the Ayyash et al. case is a significant milestone for justice in that country. It is the culmination of 11 years of work by dedicated STL officials and numerous others to pursue accountability following the 2005 assassination of Lebanon’s then-prime minister Rafik Hariri and the killing of 21 others.

“The STL’s decision sends a strong message that those who perpetrate terrorist acts and threaten international peace and security will be held accountable.

“We acknowledge that this verdict may not bring the closure desired by many in Lebanon. However, today’s verdict upholds the principle of accountability and serves as a small but significant step forward in the continued pursuit for democracy, justice and security in Lebanon. Canada will continue to strongly support the Lebanese people in these efforts, particularly in the face of existing challenges, which have been greatly amplified by the devastating explosions of August 4 in Beirut.”

Quick facts

  • The Special Tribunal for Lebanon is an independent court, established with the primary mandate of holding trials for people accused of carrying out the February 14, 2005, attack, which killed 22 people, including Lebanon’s then-prime minister Rafik Hariri.
  • Canada has been a long-standing supporter of the STL, in line with Canada’s priorities of supporting international law and the fight against impunity for the perpetrators of serious international crimes.
  • Since the STL’s inception, Canada has contributed approximately $8 million by way of direct financial contributions and through the secondment of several RCMP investigators.
  • Canada is providing over $365.5 million in international assistance to Lebanon between 2016-2021 as part of Canada’s Middle East Strategy, and has committed $30 million in the wake of the explosions of August 4 in Beirut. 


Syrine Khoury
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada
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