First Published: 2013-02-20

 

Lebanon military court seeks death penalty for Samaha, Mamlouk

 

Judge demands death penalty for ex-minister Samaha, Syrian security chief Mamlouk, who face charges of plotting attacks in Lebanon.

 

Middle East Online

Assad allies in Syria fall one after the other

BEIRUT - A Lebanese judge Wednesday demanded the death penalty for ex-minister Michel Samaha and Syrian security chief Ali Mamlouk, who face charges of plotting attacks on political and religious figures in Lebanon.

Military magistrate Riad Abu Ghida said Samaha and Mamlouk should be given the ultimate punishment "for transporting explosives from Syria to Lebanon in an attempt to assassinate Lebanese political and religious leaders," according to a copy of the indictment.

They were also accused of targeting "Syrian gunmen" and "smugglers" in the Akkar region along Lebanon's northern border with Syria.

Samaha and Mamlouk were first accused in August of planning the attacks along with a Syrian army colonel identified only by his first name, Adnan.

Investigators have said that explosives were found in Samaha's car when he was arrested at his home on August 9. A former information minister, the Christian politician is known for having close ties to the Damascus regime.

An arrest warrant for Mamlouk was issued on February 4.

According to the indictment: "The explosives were delivered by Colonel Adnan to Samaha in Syria with the approval of Mamlouk."

"Defendants Mamlouk and Adnan agreed with Michel Samaha to carry out bombings aimed at killing Syrian gunmen and smugglers... and to recruit people to carry out the bombings against insurgents and smugglers in the Akkar region."

Samaha is also accused of "inciting sectarian strife".

An inquiry will be made to learn the full identity of Colonel Adnan.

The military court, meanwhile, decided not to prosecute in the same case Buthaina Shaaban, a senior advisor to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, citing "lack of evidence."

Syria occupied Lebanon militarily and politically for nearly three decades until 2005, when its troops were forced to pull out of the country under international pressure.

Seven years after Syria withdrew from Lebanon, the country's political forces remain sharply divided over their powerful neighbour.

 

US-backed forces capture key Syria oil field

Iraq PM arrives in Saudi to upgrade ties

UN ends Libya talks with no progress made

Tillerson does not expect Gulf crisis to be resolved soon

Ancient Turkish town set to vanish forever under floodwaters

More than half of Austrians vote for anti-immigration party

Washington sees potential Hezbollah threat in the US

Cairo killing sparks security concerns among Copts

35 Egyptian police killed in Islamist ambush

Morocco recalls Algeria envoy over 'hashish money' jibe

Ceremony marks 75 years since WWII Battle of El Alamein

Somalia attack death toll rises to 358

Long road ahead for families of jailed Morocco protesters

How Raqa recapture affects complex Syrian war

Israel hits Syrian artillery after Golan fire

Germany advances Israel submarine deal after corruption holdup

Bashir Gemayel's killer convicted, 35 years later

SDF hails 'historic victory' against IS in Raqa

Hamas delegation visits Iran

Turkish court orders release of teacher on hunger strike

Yemen rebel youth minister urges children to join war

Iran's Guards show no intention of curbing activities in Mideast

EU will cut some money for Turkey as ties sour

Iraqi workers return to oil fields retaken from Kurds

Kurdish disarray shows resurgence of Iraq's army

Iranian military chief visits frontline near Syria's Aleppo

Iraq army takes last Kurd-held area of Kirkuk province

Turkey issues arrest warrants for 110 people over Gulen links

Lebanon approves first budget since 2005

Moscow seeks to boost its influence in Kurdistan through oil

Hamas calls US unity comments ‘blatant interference’

OPEC chief pleased with oil market rebalancing

Turkish police detain leading civil society figure

G7, tech giants meet to tackle terror online

Iraq’s Kurdish regional government open to Baghdad talks

Tensions flare among Yemen's rebels

Baghdad court issues arrest warrant for Iraqi Kurd VP

Erdogan, Nigerian counterpart to ramp up cooperation

Russian medics operate on Yemen's Saleh despite embargo

Baghdad condemns oil deal between Russia’s Rosneft, Kurds

Power shifts again in Iraq's multi-ethnic Kirkuk

Syrian general accused of journalist deaths killed in Deir Ezzor

Raqa liberators ready for civilian handover, on to next battle

Revolutionary Guards say Iranian missile program will continue

Erdogan calls on three major mayors to resign