Press release: Open Letter to the Lebanese Parliament

Beirut, 23 February 2021

24 different actors, including the Tripoli Bar Association and local and international organizations, demand through an open letter submitted to the Human Rights Committee at the Lebanese Parliament answers to numerous questions and the implementation of recommendations regarding violations of the Article 47 of the Criminal Procedure Code amended by Law No. 191/2020 and continuing not to allow lawyers to attend the preliminary investigation, and Law 65/2017 (Criminalization of torture).

For this reason, a delegation was formed consisting of the head of the Tripoli Bar Association, Mohammad Mrad, on behalf of the organizations signatories to the letter, along with: member of the Bar Association and representative of the Judicial Aid and Legal Aid Center at the Bar Association, Raymond Khattar, member of the Bar Association, Mohammad Nash’a Fatal, Director of the Institute of Human Rights of the Bar Association, Dolly Farah and Director of The Center for Prisoner’s Rights at the Bar Association, Mohammad Sablouh. In addition to, the Director of Helping Hands Foundation, Hala Hamze, representative of Active Lebanon, the research center at Shams Beirut, Ceasefire Centre for Civilian Rights in the UK, Khaled Zaza, and the representative of the Lebanese Center for Human Rights (CLDH) Rabih Keirouz.

This delegation visited the head of the Human Rights Parliamentary Committee, Deputy Dr. Michel Moussa at the Lebanese Parliament in Beirut to submit the open letter entailing questions regarding the procedures taken by the Ministry of Interior and Municipalities, the Ministry of Justice, and the Ministry of Defense, and calling on the Human Rights Committee to take initiative in applying the recommendations provided in the open letter. In the event that the above-mentioned ministers do not give clear and convincing answers, the delegation requests their interrogation before the Parliament’s General Assembly, in accordance with Article 139 of the Parliament’s internal system, that allows the latter in its General Assembly to conduct a parliamentary investigation in a specific subject based on a proposal submitted for discussion or a question or interrogation put forward on a specific topic or project.

While Deputy Moussa affirmed to the delegation that he will follow-up on the requests of the open letter with the relevant ministers and will raise the file in the next parliamentary session.

To view the open letter in full