JUSTICE PALACE ASSAILANTS ARE ARMY INTELLIGENCE AGENTS? 20 August 2001

Discours et Textes

The plainclothesmen who outraged Lebanon by brutally beating students and lawyers to break up a protest against the army’s summary arrests of opposition groups hostile to Syria were security operatives of the Lebanese army’s intelligence branch, An Nahar reported Friday.
This was concluded by a weeklong investigation carried out under the superintendence of Interior Minister Elias Murr to determine the identity of the assailants involved in the attack on protestors around Beirut’s Justice palace Aug. 9.

At least 10 students from Gen. Aoun’s Free Patriotic Movement and Samir Geagea’s Lebanese Forces were hospitalized with severe bruises after the beating and kicking assault.

“Murr’s investigation has concluded that the culprits belonged to the intelligence department of the Lebanese army with absolutely no links to the interior ministry,” An Nahar reported.

Murr referred the findings of his investigation to Defense Minister Khalil Hrawi, asking him to take the necessary measures. Murr had repeatedly asserted that he would mete out a harsh punishment.

Premier Hariri has vowed at the cabinet session Thursday evening to bring those who ordered and those who executed the attack on the students and lawyers to justice. “They won’t be allowed to get away with it,” Hariri said.

An interior ministry communiqué said Murr has ordered a police investigation into complaints that local TV networks were banned from broadcasting live a freedom’s rally held by opposition groups at the Carlton Hotel Thursday to protest Army high handedness.

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