Thu, 21 Sep 2023

BEIRUT, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- Former Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab and two former ministers were charged with homicide with probable intent on Tuesday over the Beirut port explosions in 2020, the local al-Jadeed TV reported.

Tarek Bitar, a Lebanese judge tasked with investigating the Beirut port explosions, also charged Abbas Ibrahim, chief of Lebanese General Security, State Security director Major General Tony Saliba, and former Lebanese army commander Jean Kahwaji in connection with the blasts.

Lebanese Prosecutor-General Ghassan Oueidat, who was also charged in the Beirut blast investigation, announced on Tuesday his rejection of the decision issued earlier by Bitar, arguing that the judge was suspended from his investigation over a year ago.

Bitar's work had been interrupted for over a year following several complaints filed against him by two former ministers facing charges, forcing him to halt the probe. Bitar resumed his work after a legal opinion said he should be allowed to continue his investigation.

Primary investigations into the blast revealed that the ammonium nitrate stored since 2014 in a warehouse at the port caused the explosions, which killed over 200 people and injured more than 6,000 others.

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