BEIRUT: Lebanon’s police held Saturday at their Beirut headquarters a ceremony commemorating Brig. Gen. Wissam al-Hasan, the former head of the Information Branch who was assassinated a year earlier in a car bombing in the Lebanese capital.
Caretaker Interior Minister Mawran Charbel was among several to speak at the ceremony, held at the police headquarters in Ashrafieh not far from where Hasan, 47, was assassinated on Oct. 19, 2012.
Charbel said despite the killing of its former chief, the Information Branch was still working hard and formed an “institution for the whole nation with its different sects and political factions.”
Separately, Prime Minister-designate Tammam Salam mourned the loss of Hasan.
“On the first memorial of the martyrdom of Brig. Gen. Wissam al-Hassan, we recall a national leader whose name has been registered as a significant son of our nation, [a person] who devoted themselves to defend the security and stability of the country and who [sacrificed] their life in the service of a free and independent Lebanon,” Salam said in a statement.
Salam said Hasan’s was “a loss that we will never be able to replace.”
Hasan was known for his pivotal role in major security investigations in Lebanon, including the probe into the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and terrorism charges brought against former Information Minister Michel Samaha.
Appointed head of the ISF Information Branch in 2006, Hasan was instrumental in building the department and spearheaded its major cases.
In 2009, Hasan led the ISF’s wide-ranging inquiry into Israeli spy networks in Lebanon that led to the arrest of more than 100 individuals suspected of collaborating with Israel.