Lebanese Forces Files Lawsuit against Bassil for Criminal Defamationإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
The Lebanese Forces on Thursday filed a lawsuit against Energy Minister Jebran Bassil on charges of criminal defamation, the party announced in a statement.
It said that it filed the lawsuit over the minister’s remarks to al-Akhbar newspaper on April 23 in which he accused the March 14 forces of “preparing to kick off a new wave of political assassinations in Lebanon.”
The lawsuit was also directed against the newspaper and the writer of the article, Hiam al-Qosaify.
The statement added: “Bassil implied that the Lebanese Forces was behind the assassinations that took place in Lebanon after 2005.”
“All the crimes that have taken place since then were the subject of investigations by the international investigation commission and indictments have been directed against individuals who will be made to stand trial before the Special Tribunal for Lebanon,” it added.
“The defamatory remarks made by Bassil against the Lebanese Forces and its leader Samir Geagea render him a criminal defamation offender in order to derail the investigation in the assassination attempt against Geagea,” it concluded.
The LF chief was the victim of a failed sniper attack at his Maarab residence on April 4.
The Internal Security Forces General Directorate later revealed that a meeting was held between Interior Minister Marwan Charbel and ISF chief Ashraf Rifi to follow up on the latest findings in the investigation into Geagea’s assassination attempt.
Geagea had stated on Monday that he will sue Bassil for “misleading the investigation” into the recent attempt on his life, accusing the Free Patriotic Movement and Hizbullah of practicing “psychological terrorism.”
“There is a ‘machine’ comprising high-level officials from Hizbullah and the FPM and I call it a machine of terrorism and oppression. Whenever an incident happens, they do the same thing by casting doubt on it and its motives,” he said in an interview on Future TV.
Bassil told al-Akhbar newspaper: “We fear that a new wave of assassinations are being prepared, similar to what happened in 2005, whereby an assassination took place whenever the March 14 forces sought to approve a matter” linked to the state.
The minister also indirectly questioned Geagea’s story regarding the assassination, saying: “He’s the one who announced the attack and informed the public about it.”
“As long as the details of the case remain linked to what Geagea can provide, we have the right to question it until official accounts proves otherwise,” he added.