Progressive Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblat on Sunday expressed concerns that the appointment of a new investigation team into the Beirut port blast could be aimed at “wrapping up and burying” the investigation.
“The main point in the issue of the port bombing and the resulting destruction and death is not probing how the blast happened, but rather unveiling the truth about who brought the ammonium nitrate shipment and who covered for its presence until the disaster occurred,” Jumblatt tweeted.
“Is the new investigation team a Trojan horse aimed at wrapping up and burying the file?” Jumblat asked.
Lebanon on Friday named Tarek al-Bitar as new judge to lead the probe into the devastating blast, a day after firing his predecessor Judge Fadi Sawwan
Jumblatt wondered if the new judge would be able to conduct his work “without interference or pressure like in the case of his predecessor .”
“Will he be able to cross the red lines?” Jumblatt asked.
His concern could confirm earlier reports that Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah called for wrapping up the port explosion file
Lebanese Forces lawmakers George Okais, Fadi Saad, Imad Wakim and Majed Abillama will on Monday visit the office of the U.N. Special Coordinator for Lebanon to deliver a petition demanding an international fact-finding mission into the disastrous Aug. 4 blast at Beirut port.
A statement issued by the LF’s media department said the MPs will meet 3:00 pm with U.N. Deputy Special Coordinator for Lebanon Najat Rochdi to hand her the petition, which is signed by the LF’s 15 lawmakers.
The petition is addressed to U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
“The visit comes due to people’s lack of trust in the local investigation and in its ability to unveil the truth,” the LF said in its statement, citing “the current obstacles” that the probe is facing.
The party also reminded that it had pushed for such an international commission from the very first hours after the disaster, adding that the MPs and relatives of victims will hold a press conference at 4:30 pm.
President Michel Aoun who knew about the explosion at least 2 weeks before it happened , but did nothing to stop it , refused to allow an international investigation and promised to bring the culprits to justice within 6 days , but it has been over six months and nothing has been done so far .
The massive explosion of Aug 4, 2020 at Beirut’s port destroyed Lebanon’s only grain silos , killed at least 211 people , injured 6500 , destroyed a major historic and cultural section of Beirut and left 300, 000 homeless after 2,750 Tonnes of Ammonium Nitrate Exploded .
They were stored there for nearly 7 years. , reportedly for use by the Syrian regime in its barrel bombs against the civilians in Syria . The shipment was reportedly confiscated by Badri Daher a close supporter of President Michel Aoun and his son-in-law Gebran Bassil .
The link to Syrian barrel bombs was researched and confirmed by slain Shiite activists and researcher Lokman Slim who was recently assassinated by Hezbollah in southern Lebanon. According to leaked reports about Slim’s findings , Hezbollah shipped the bulk of the Ammonium Nitrate to the Syrian regime and moved some to her cells in Germany, UK, Cyprus and Lebanon. The FBI confirmed that only 500 out of the 2750 tons exploded
The shipment arrived at a time when Syria was surrendering its chemical weapons to a UN backed organization for destruction .
Judge Fadi Sawan was appointed to investigate the explosion . He charged caretaker PM Hassan Diab , former finance minister Ali Hassan Khalil, and former public works ministers Ghazi Zeaiter and Youssef Finianos with negligence over the explosion . The politicians behind the charged politicians attacked the judge and accused him of politicizing the issue. The investigation was halted for months and after it was reactivated Judge Sawwan issued an arrest warrant for Finianos which prompted the Court of Cassation to remove the Judge