January 17, 2011 / 5:56 PM / 9 years ago

Factbox: Lebanon tribunal: The world's first terrorism court

(Reuters) - The prosecutor of the international Lebanon tribunal issued draft indictments on Monday over the 2005 killing of former prime minister Rafik al-Hariri.

The contents of the draft indictments, which were sent to pre-trial judge Daniel Fransen, were not revealed and details of the charge sheet may not emerge for another six to 10 weeks, when Fransen is expected to decide whether there is enough evidence to proceed with a trial.

Here are some facts about the tribunal.

* The Special Tribunal for Lebanon officially opened for business on March 1, 2009 as the world’s first international court with jurisdiction over the crime of terrorism.

* The court was set up by a 2007 U.N. Security Council resolution to try those accused over the 2005 bombing that killed Hariri and 22 others.

* The court has a pre-trial judge, who can confirm indictments and issue arrest warrants. There are also three trial judges, five appeals judges and two alternative judges. Four judges are Lebanese.

* For considerations of justice and fairness, and also security reasons, the court is situated in the Netherlands.

* The maximum sentence the tribunal can impose is life imprisonment. It cannot impose the death penalty or forced labor, sentences which are possible under Lebanese law.

* Both the prosecution and defense have the right to present their case to the court, while victims have also been given the right to present their views. Trials in absentia are allowed.

* Some 51 percent of the court’s budget is funded by voluntary contributions from states, while Lebanon’s government is responsible for the other 49 percent.

* However, Hezbollah has demanded that Lebanon end all cooperation with the tribunal, withdraw funding and pull out the Lebanese judges.

* The tribunal employs 333 people from 62 countries, 50 of whom are Lebanese, and has a 2011 budget of $65.7 million.

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