The Lebanese Center for Human Rights (CLDH) is a local non-profit, non-partisan Lebanese human rights organization in Beirut that was established by the Franco-Lebanese Movement SOLIDA (Support for Lebanese Detained Arbitrarily) in 2006. SOLIDA has been active since 1996 in the struggle against arbitrary detention, enforced disappearance and the impunity of those perpetrating gross human violations.

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August 12, 2011

The Daily Star - Lebanon's Arabic press digest - Aug. 12, 2011

Following are summaries of some of the main stories in a selection of Lebanese newspapers Friday. The Daily Star cannot vouch for the accuracy of these reports.
Al-Akhbar: First official clash in Cabinet
The electricity issue almost triggered a big problem in Cabinet Thursday had Hezbollah ministers not intervened to end a fight between minister affiliated with [MP Michel Aoun’s] Free Patriotic Movement and those who support Prime Minister Najib Mikati and MP Walid Jumblatt.
Agreement has been reached to refer the electricity issue to the next Cabinet meeting to avoid negative repercussions that could threaten the government’s unity.
[FPM leader Michel Aoun has proposed a draft law to establish a $1.2 billion fund for the Energy Ministry to increase Lebanon’s electricity production by 700 megawatts.]
The electricity issue did not go well during Thursday’s Cabinet meeting. The issue was reason enough to ignite a new dispute between President Michel Sleiman and Aoun, who boycotted the annual presidential Iftar.
In addition to the electricity issue, political circles were also occupied with the explosion that took place in Antelias Thursday.
Ad-Diyar: Last minute error rescued Antelias from disaster
Bomb blast: Two people killed
STL delegation summoned Murr, Hamadeh, Chidiac, and Hawi’s widow today
Antelias escaped a huge explosion Thursday. Had the bomb went off it would have killed more than 40 citizens. The bomb was estimated to weigh 750 grams wrapped in nails and iron pieces. The two people handling it were heading to Antelias Square which is said to be the capital of north Metn where normally more than 100 people gather.
Initial investigation showed that the bomb was wrapped in a bag and that it exploded accidentally, killing the two people handling it. Eighteen cars were damaged.
The two perpetrators are no residents of Antelias. They arrived at the scene in a [BMW] X5 driven by a third person. The two left the car on foot to place the bomb somewhere in the public square to explode in front of shops and the vegetable market where it is crowded with people.
Information suggested the bomb would have inflicted extensive damage since it was wrapped in nails and iron pieces for shrapnel effect. Military experts say had the bomb went off it would have left more than 30 people killed and 100 wounded in Antelias, one of the largest Christian areas in the north Metn province.
The two men handling the bomb were identified as Hassan Nayef Nassar and Ihsan Ali Dia.
Al-Mustaqbal: Ambiguous blast in Antelias as Cassese urges accused to take advantage of legal options
Detailed indictment to be issued next week
Aug. 1, the expiry day of a deadline imposed by the Special Tribunal for Lebanon on arresting four Hezbollah suspects in the assassination of former statesman Rafik Hariri, crowded with unexpected events – a security message, an STL statement about the next step in light of Lebanon’s response and a judicial announcement about a link between the Feb. 14 terrorist attack and the assassination attempts against former Cabinet ministers Elias Murr and Marwan Hamadeh and former Communist Party leader George Hawi at a time when President Michel Sleiman hosted an annual traditional Iftar in honor of Lebanese political leaders after chairing a Cabinet meeting.
An STL delegation Thursday listened to the testimonies of Elias Murr, Marwan Hamadeh and May Chidiac at the office of State Prosecutor Saeed Mirza.
Well-informed sources told Al-Mustaqbal that a link has been established between Hariri’s killing and the assassination attempts on the lives of Murr and Hamadeh, which convinced judges to refer these cases to The Hague.
The sources said the Justice Palace would also witness similar meetings between the STL delegation and families of the victims and those affected by the terrorist bombings.
But more important, Al-Mustaqbal has learned that the indictment into Hariri’s assassination will be issued before the end of next week.
As-Safir: Abbas in Beirut Tuesday-Wednesday to discuss September [Security Council meet on Palestine]
STL paves way for new indictments against Hezbollah
The Antelias incident Thursday was politicized – with reports that the bomb was designed to target a [Lebanese] judge and then reports stating that the victims [handling the bomb] belonged to Hezbollah before it was proven that both reports were untrue.
It turned out that the incident was the result of a financial and personal dispute among a number of people, some of them car deals, killing two of them while pulling out the 150-gram hand-grenade detonator, according to a report presented by Interior Minister Marwan Charbel to Cabinet.
President Michel Sleiman rushed to keep the incident under control by calling for a meeting Friday of the Supreme Defense Council to “take appropriate measures to implement the policy statement to provide security.”
Meanwhile, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will visit Lebanon Aug. 16-17. Palestinian sources told As-Safir that Abbas will meet Sleiman and Speaker Nabih Berri on Aug. 16. The sources said Sleiman will host an Iftar in honor of Abbas. On Aug. 17, Abbas is scheduled to meet with Mikati and visit the Palestinian embassy.
Sources said the main purpose of the visit was to consult with Lebanese officials ahead of a September Security Council meeting to discuss the recognition of a Palestinian state.

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