Friday’s assassination of former Finance Minister Mohammad Shatah adds to a series of political assassinations the country has been witnessing for nearly 10 years. Below is a timeline of the attacks that mainly targeted anti-Syrian Lebanese figures.
Oct. 1, 2004
MP Marwan Hamade survived an attempt on his life when a car bomb went off near his convoy in the Ain al-Mreisseh neighborhood of Beirut. Hamade was close to Progressive Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblatt. The blast signaled the start of a wave of assassinations that targeted politicians and journalists mainly from the March 14 coalition. It was the first explosion targeting a politician in Lebanon in at least 10 years.
Feb. 14, 2005
A massive suicide attack struck the convoy of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, killing the Lebanese leader and 22 others. MP Bassel Fuleihan, who served as the economy minister under Hariri, suffered serious wounds from the explosion from which he died in April. The Future Movement, Lebanese Forces, Free Patriotic Movement, Progressive Socialist Party and Kataeb Party all accused Syria of the assassination. Their supporters staged a massive demonstration on March 14 of the same year, marking the birth of the coalition and demanding the truth about Hariri’s assassination along with Syria’s withdrawal from Lebanon. Syria pulled out its troops in April the same year.
June 2, 2005
Journalist and activist Samir Kassir died in a blast from a bomb placed under his car near his house in the Beirut neighborhood of Ashrafieh. Kassir was a staunch critic of Syria’s presence in Lebanon.
June 21, 2005
George Hawi, the former head of the Lebanese Communist Party, was assassinated in an explosion in Wata al-Moseitbeh in Beirut.
July 12, 2005
Elias Murr, defense minister and deputy prime minister, survived an explosion which targeted his car in north Beirut. Murr was pro-Syrian during Syria’s control of Lebanon. However, he said following the assassination attempt that he had received threats from Rustom Ghazali, the chief of Syria’s intelligence in Lebanon.
Sept. 25, 2005
May Chidiac, a pro-March 14 journalist and an outspoken critic of Syria, suffered serious wounds when a bomb exploded under her car. Chidiac lost a leg and an arm in the attack.
Dec. 12, 2005
MP Gebran Tueni, the editor-in-chief of Lebanon’s An-Nahar daily, was killed in a car bomb shortly after he left his Beit Mery residence. A prominent March 14 figure, Tueni had championed calls for Syria’s withdrawal from Lebanon.
Nov. 21, 2006
Industry Minister and MP Pierre Gemayel, the son of Kataeb Party leader Amin Gemayel, was shot dead when gunmen intercepted his car in the northern Beirut suburb of Jdeideh.
June 13, 2007
A car bomb killed Future bloc lawmaker Walid Eido, an anti-Syrian figure, his son and eight people on Beirut’s seafront.
Sept 19, 2007
A blast killed Kataeb MP Antoine Ghanem and six others in the Beirut suburb of Sin al-Fil.
Dec. 12, 2007
Brig. Gen. Francois Hajj, the head of operations for the Lebanese Army and his driver were killed in a blast in Baabda. Hajj played a major role in the Army’s operation against militants of Fatah al-Islam in the northern Palestinian refugee camp of Nahr al-Bared that summer. Hajj was also a potential candidate to succeed then-Army commander Gen. Michel Sleiman.
Jan. 25, 2008
Captain Wissam Eid, a top communications analyst with the Internal Security Forces’ Information Branch, was assassinated in a car bombing outside Beirut. Eid played a key role in investigations into Hariri’s assassination.
Sept. 11, 2008
Saleh Aridi, a senior member of MP Talal Arslan’s Lebanese Democratic Party, was assassinated in a car bombing in his hometown of Baysour, southeast of Beirut.
Oct 19, 2012
The assassination of Brig. Gen. Wissam al-Hasan, the head of the ISF Information Branch, ended a four-year lull in political assassinations which Lebanon enjoyed following the May 2008 Doha Accord. Hasan, his driver and a passerby were killed in a car bombing which rocked the Beirut neighborhood of Ashrafieh. A top intelligence official, Hasan was close to former Prime Minister Saad Hariri and his security agency uncovered terrorist attacks plotted by former Minister Michel Samaha and Syrian official Ali Mamlouk, head of the Syrian National Security Bureau, around two months prior to his killing.
Dec. 27, 2013
Former Finance Minister Mohammad Shatah, who had been a senior aide to former Prime Minister Saad Hariri, was killed along with five others in a car bomb explosion in Downtown Beirut. Shatah was on his way to a March 14 coalition meeting at Hariri’s residence.