President of the Republic, General Michel Aoun, called on the judges in Lebanon to “Rise up for their dignity and not to be afraid of the oppression of those in power.
President Aoun demanded the judiciary to “Confront anyone who restricts their justice in the Central Bank, as in the explosion of Beirut Port, where the souls of the victims, the wounded and their families and the affected are still in trouble, as is the case of the wronged detainees and their families as well”.
Moreover, the President called on the judiciary “To be completely liberated from any persuasion or intimidation which is offenses unworthy of the judicial authority”.
President Aoun’s calls came in a speech addressed to the judicial body this afternoon.
“On the ninth of last June, and based on Article 13 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, the competent judiciary initiated a public right lawsuit against the defendant, the Governor of the Banque du Liban, Riad Toufic Salameh, and his associates and those interfering with him with serious financial crimes, which are made more serious by the fact that the first suspect in committing them is the governor of a central bank.
These are crimes of embezzlement, forgery, money laundering, illicit enrichment and tax evasion, and after the full investigation that revealed the violations and responsibilities was completed and a request paper was submitted to refer the defendants by the Appeal Public Prosecution in Beirut before the first investigating judge in Beirut.
Since then, judges have been divided. Those concerned evade responsibility without the prosecution being made in accordance with the legal principles, which makes me, from my position and role as head of state, and under my constitutional oath, I demand the judiciary to be completely liberated from any inducement or intimidation, which are two offenses unworthy of the judicial authority.
I know that a propelled or imprisoned judiciary somehow means that someone is restricting it, and it may be harmed by its justice, and it is inevitably influential in order to find a way to disrupt a constitutional authority such as the judiciary, but it inevitably finds a listening ear.
From here, I demand the judiciary to confront everyone who restricts their justice in the Central Bank, as in the Beirut Port explosion, the second memorial of its deadly and destructive effects on the fourth of this month, when the souls of the victims, the wounded, their families and the affected are still in turmoil, as is the case of the oppressed detainees and their families as well.
Judges are messengers of justice, and it was once said, as is well known, that when the judiciary is fine, the country will be fine, even if it is destroyed in people and stones, as it was also said that what makes tyrants emperors is submission and kneeling before them.
My call to the judges today: Rise up for your dignity and authority, and do not fear the oppression of those in power, for they realize their weakness before you when you perform the mission of the justice of earth waiting for the justice of heaven”.