Bassil: States Can’t Be Established by Encouraging Crime
Free Patriotic Movement chief MP Jebran Bassil voiced disdain on Friday over a general amnesty law that drew controversy at a legislative session the day before, saying that “criminals and terrorists must not be treated the same as Lebanese wishing to return back from Israel.”
“Basically, we believe that criminals must be punished and we reject the general amnesty law. We refused the proposed swap: criminals and terrorists must not be pardoned in exchange for the return of Lebanese from Israel,” said Bassil in a tweet.
He added: “The amnesty law for those fleeing to Israel was originally issued and only lacks the applied decree. Criminals with blood on their hands must not be allowed to return. No State can be built by encouraging crime.”
Parliamentary blocs are divided over what crimes should be pardoned and included in the controversial general amnesty law.
The law involves a pardon for Lebanese who fled to Israel after its withdrawal from the South in 2000, another for Islamists jailed over terror-related offenses and one for drug-related offenses that would benefit prisoners who hail from the Bekaa.
The country's three main Christian blocs including the FPM, Kataeb, and Lebanese Forces reject the legislation arguing it pardons inmates including those accused of killing soldiers and security members.