The February 14, 2005 assassinations of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri and 22 others with a car bomb in downtown Beirut changed Lebanon forever. The assassination of "Mr. Lebanon" reminded all Lebanese of the fragility of their pluralistic system. Rafiq Hariri was not only a symbol for Lebanon; he was a husband, father, brother, and friend. He transcended sect and stood with the people of Lebanon, giving hope to his country after 15 years of ruinous civil war.
For decades, the people of Lebanon have fought for their inherent right to live free from fear of murder for political reasons. We call on the next Lebanese government to provide stability and promote justice for the people of Lebanon by honoring its obligations to the Tribunal. This is a decisive moment for Lebanon. No more Lebanese families should ever have to mourn the deaths of loved ones at the hand of cowardly assassins. Those who would try to block Lebanon's cooperation should desist and show a measure of human decency. Ultimately, without justice, there can be no peace and stability for Lebanon.
The United States continues its unwavering support for the full implementation of UN Security Council Resolutions 1701, 1680 and 1559. These resolutions are testaments to Lebanon’s sovereignty and independence. The United States and the international community stand solidly behind the people of Lebanon as they observe this day of sorrow. We remain committed to working together for a peaceful, prosperous, and sovereign Lebanon.