Rifi Demands Legal Action against Arsonists who Torched ISIL Flag

Justice Minister Ashraf Rifi vowed to legally pursue a number of protesters who set ablaze a flag for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

The minister said in a statement issued by his press office that the ISIL flag has the first pillar of Islam (Ashahada) written on it, which is the testimony that there is no God except for Allah and Mohammed is the messenger of Allah.

Several people were seen in Beirut's Ashrafiyeh Sassine Square burning the flag of ISIL earlier in the day.

Rifi slammed the burning of the flag, which “is not related to ISIL and its terrorist course.”

He filed a request to General Prosecutor Samir Hammoud to pursue the assailants and detain them in order to prosecute them.

“This demeanor insults religions and could incite sedition,” Rifi considered.

Meanwhile, Mufti of Tripoli and the North Sheikh Malek al-Shaar revealed that he made contacts and concluded that the Sassine Square incident was “an individual act that has no political backgrounds.”

But “we strongly deplore attacks against religious symbols, regardless of which sect they represented,” he stressed.

"We leave this matter to the judiciary who has the final say in this and whom we trust.”

The Lebanese army clashed with Syrian rebels in the northeastern border town of Arsal on August 2 after the army detained a leading jihadist.

It ended with a truce negotiated by Muslim clerics, but the jihadists withdrew from the area taking 24 policemen and soldiers hostage.

The Islamic State (IS) jihadist group has prompted widespread concern as it advances in both Syria and Iraq, killing hundreds of people, including in gruesome beheading and mass executions.

Later in the day, LBCI reported that Change and Reform bloc MP Ibrahim Kanaan, who is also a lawyer, decided to defend the youth who burnt down the ISIL flag.

H.K. / S.D.B.


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