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Terrorism Case Against Samaha Moves to Next Stage

Michel Samaha and Ali Mamlouk, along with a third accomplice known as Col. Adnan, have been indicted on charges of plotting to carry out terrorist attacks, writes Mohammad Harfoush.
Lebanese policemen stand guard at the entrance of a residential building where former Lebanese government minister Michel Samaha lives, in Beirut August 9, 2012. Samaha, a former Lebanese government minister with close ties to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, was detained in Lebanon on Thursday for questioning over what the Lebanese prime minister described as security-related matters. A security source said Samaha, detained in the early hours, was being questioned about alleged plans to cause instability

In a new judicial development in the case against former minister Michel Samaha and Syrian Maj. Gen. Ali Mamlouk, Lebanese military prosecutor Saqr Saqr has finished his examination of the case accusing Samaha and Mamlouk of planning to carry out terrorist acts.

Samaha was arrested in Aug. 2012. The following month, deputy military prosecutor Sami Sader filed a lawsuit against Samaha, Mamlouk and another Syrian colonel known only by his first name, Adnan.

Five days ago, Samaha’s file arrived at the office of Saqr, who carefully examined the file and charged Samaha and Mamlouk. The charges, which carry the death sentence under the penal code, include planning to carry out terrorist acts by setting up explosives and bombs, moving them from Syria to Lebanon and planting them in public places and at Ramadan festivities in order to assassinate parliament members, clerics and politicians.

In addition, Saqr requested that an investigation be launched to reveal the full identity of Col. Adnan, the director of Mamlouk’s office, and that he be referred to investigative military judge Riad Abu Ghaida for an indictment. Saqr also requested that the case and defendants be referred to the Permanent Military Court for trial.

According to information given to Al-Monitor, Saqr’s examination was based on audio-visual records. The source expected Abu Ghaida to issue an indictment within ten days and said that Saqr would be ready to take the appropriate legal action based on the final indictment.

Mohammad Harfoush is a Lebanese journalist reporting for the Kuwaiti Al-Anbaa newspaper and the author of Eritrea: Basic Facts.

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