BEIRUT: Prime Minister Najib Mikati urged the judiciary to swiftly issue indictments in outstanding cases primarily that of Michel Samaha and MP Butros Harb.
According to Mikati’s press office, the prime minister met with General Prosecutor Hatem Madi who briefed him on the progress of some judicial cases.
“[Mikati] emphasized the need to accelerate the work of finalizing these cases particularly the indictment in the case of former minister Michel Samaha, the case of MP Butros Harb, the cases of detained Islamists, the counterfeit drugs and illegal livestock,” his office said.
Samaha, along with two Syrian officials, have been accused of planning terrorist attacks in the country aimed at assassinating religious and political figures.
Due to the sensitivity of the case, judicial sources have told The Daily Star that the judiciary is hesitant to issue an indictment, fearing repercussions in Lebanon.
Meanwhile, Harb was a target of an assassination attempt last year when a bomb was found on an elevator in his Beirut office. He has also accused Hezbollah of sheltering a suspect involved in the crime.
Mikati’s call for Madi to speed up the legal process for the detained Islamists comes after a recent protest by the prisoners’ families demanding their immediate release.
The families have vowed to take escalatory measures.
The suspected Islamists have been in prison since 2006 without trial on charges of fighting against the Lebanese Army in the battle of Nahr al-Bared, one of Lebanon’s refugee camps.
Two consumer-related incidents have also shaken the country: the entry of several illegal medications and reports of diseased livestock imports.