Harb Hails Judiciary after Man Charged in Attempt on his Life

Batroun MP Butros Harb lauded on Saturday State commissioner to the military court Judge Saqr Saqr for “taking the bold decision” to charge Mahmoud Hayek with the attempt on his life.

Saqr “took a courageous decision given the pressure ... exerted by Hizbullah on the judiciary by striking deals at the expense of justice and the investigation,” Harb told al-Joumhouria newspaper.

He expressed regret however that some judicial and political officials had tried to strike a deal with Hizbullah.

Harb hoped that “the course of justice would not be subdued by political deals.”

Saqr charged on Monday Hayek, a Hizbullah member, with the assassination attempt on Harb in July 2012 and with carrying out acts of terror.

If convicted the suspect, who still remains at large, could be sentenced to death.

The March 14 opposition lawmaker escaped the assassination bid after residents of a building in which his office is located in the Beirut district of Badaro discovered individuals trying to booby-trap the elevator.

A string of high-level assassinations struck Lebanon between 2004 and 2008, targeting political, media and security figures who vocally opposed the Syrian government, including former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri who was killed in a powerful car bomb blast in February 2005.

In his remarks to al-Joumhouria, Harb thanked President Michel Suleiman for asking the general prosecutor to make speedy decisions on the attempt on his life.

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