Geagea: Millions of Lebanese Captives in Hizbullah Prison since 1990
Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea on Friday vowed that the LF will continue to search for the Lebanese detainees who “went missing” in Syrian prisons, noting that “there are millions of captives in Lebanon" and accusing Hizbullah of putting the fate of the Lebanese people in danger.
“The detainees in the prisons of the Syrian regime were used for political ends and I ask everyone to be confident that we will carry on with our efforts to release them,” Geagea said at a seminar in Maarab on the Lebanese detainees in Syrian prisons.
“Until the moment, the (Lebanese) state has been writing our history in a curtailed manner and we want it to take care of all of its sons who were wounded in wars,” Geagea added.
“Given what the Syrian regime is doing now in Syria, we can say that it was very merciful in dealing with us in Lebanon, and we regret that some Lebanese leaders are saying that there are no captives in Syrian prisons,” he went on to say.
Geagea stressed that the fate of the 17,000 people who went missing during the civil war “has nothing to do with those who are in Syrian prisons,” noting that the LF backs efforts to unveil the fate of the Lebanese who disappeared between 1975 and 1990.
“We will continue the search for our detainees in Syrian prisons,” Geagea pledged.
Turning to the political issues, Geagea said there are “millions of captives in Lebanon and they are Lebanese captives who have been in Hizbullah's prison since 1990.”
“Our freedom is captive and our decision is captive and those who don't mention the resistance in their rhetoric would be harmed in some manner. The state would pay the price whenever it acts against Hizbullah, the thing that has led to subduing a large number of Lebanese,” Geagea added.
“A lot of Lebanese cannot voice their free opinion because of Hizbullah and no one is asking about the killers of (Lebanese Option Party member) Hashem al-Salman although the pictures of his killers are available,” the LF leader said.
Al-Salman was shot dead during a scuffle between supporters of the LOP and Hizbullah in front of the Iranian embassy in Beirut on June 9.
“After 50 days from the martyrdom of Hashem al-Salman, no one has been arrested until the moment while the case of (slain Syrian pro-regime figure) Mr. Mohammed Darrar Jammo was solved in 48 hours,” Geagea noted.
“Today, the Lebanese do not know when exactly Hizbullah might take a decision that puts their fate in danger and on July 12 (2006) the government woke up to a war,” he added.
Geagea stressed that “no one has the right to start a war whenever they want and to usurp the rights of others,” adding that Hizbullah's fighters are now “in Damascus and Aleppo and the issue is affecting everyone.”
Criticizing the remarks voiced earlier in the day by Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun, Geagea said: “He has accused the Internal Security Forces of smuggling weapons in the past two years, but he is the biggest force in cabinet, so why is he telling us this?”
“If Sukleen is squandering public funds according to Aoun, I remind that Aoun himself had promised that he would not accept to renew its contract in cabinet,” Geagea added, referring to Lebanon's main waste management contractor.
“You must propose a draft law in parliament to revise Sukleen's contract as it is unacceptable for you say that the cabinet is working on its own,” Geagea said, addressing Aoun.
Commenting on Aoun's remarks on the army, Geagea said: “Three officers, two non-commissioned officers and six soldiers were detained over the Shiyyah incidents on January 27, 2008, so why is it acceptable to put officers in detention over this incident and not over the (Kuwaikhat) incident that has to do with the Sunnis?”
“Would the General (Aoun) have talked about the army had they appointed his son-in-law (Commando Regiment commander Brig. Gen. Chamel Roukoz) as army commander? Those who love the army must hand it over their weapons and must convince their allies to hand over their weapons,” Geagea added.