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Abstract

The Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) is a hybrid international tribunal tasked with prosecuting and punishing those responsible for the 2005 bombing that killed former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. As the first international tribunal to try purely domestic crimes, the STL is a unique judicial body that employs a number of novel procedures. One such procedural rule allowed the STL Pre-Trial Judge to submit questions on applicable law to the Appeals Chamber prior to confirming any indictments. Responding in the form of an interlocutory decision, the Appeals Chamber made the groundbreaking assertion that customary international law on terrorism had finally emerged, and that it stood to impact provisions of the Lebanese Criminal Code, which the tribunal was mandated to apply.