End the Lack of Transparency in the
Selection of Judges for the Hariri Court
By Publishing the Secret List of the Nominees Immediately!
Beirut, August 23, 2007:
Dr. Muhamad Mugraby issued the following statement:
One month ago to the day, I called on the United Nations Secretary
General and the Lebanese Minister of Justice to adopt a transparent
process in the nomination for, and selection of, judges on the
prospective Hariri Court. In particular, I called on the Lebanese
Minister to make public the list of names of the Lebanese candidates he
sent to the UN Secretary General under a secret letter. This morning,
"Nahar Ash-Shabab" published an interview with MP and former minister
Walid Jumblat in which he stated that he knew the names. He said that
the list of names is not a secret and is "booby-trapped". Jumblat added:
"I was astonished to discover that one of the judges is a Syrian agent".
I do not believe that Minister Jumblat did not know that Syrian General
Ghazi Kinaan was directly involved with the appointment and promotion of
high judges, including the president of the High Judiciary Council, and
many of their assistants. Most of those appointees still occupy their
posts, although it is possible that some of them may have changed the
color of their allegiance due to the change of circumstances.
But it is a very serious charge by such a knowledgeable and influential
person to say that the list of proposed judges is "booby-trapped" and
consists partly of Syrian agents. It makes it mandatory that the
Minister of Justice publish the list immediately. Minister Rizk had in
the past published the full list of the judicial re-appointments before
it was issued and it has never been issued. If Rizk should refrain from
publishing the list of names I call on Jumblat to publish the list he
Jumblat's charges are so serious that the list, once published, should
be made the subject of open debate and honest scrutiny.
Dr. Mugraby is the president of the Center for democracy and the Rule of
Law and the founder of the Campaign for Judicial Integrity