NNA - Prime Minister, Dr. Hassan Diab, has convened a meeting of the Higher Judicial Council today at the Grand Serail, which was attended by Minister of Justice Mary Claude Najm, President of the Higher Judicial Council Judge Suhail Abboud, State Prosecutor GhassanOueidat, Head of the Judicial Inspection Panel,Judge Berkane Saad, and Judges SuhairHarakeh, Roukoz Rizk, Helena Iskandar, Maher Shaaito and Eliane Saber, in addition to theSecretary-General of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers Judge Mahmoud Makieand the Head of PM's Office, Judge Khaled Akkari.
At the beginning of the meeting, PM Diab said: “I believe that there is no country, no justice, no reform, no order, if there is no just, free, fair, and independent judiciary.
For me, the judiciary is the basic pillar of the rule of law, and in the absence of law, the law of the jungle prevails, which means chaos and instability, and each one takes the law into his own hands. There is no State without judiciary.
You are well aware of my respect for the independence of the judiciary, and I am convinced that the judiciary does not need a political decision in order to take action to prosecute crime, whatever the type of offence.
The judiciary does not need a request, an instruction, a directive, nor a wish.
The judiciary is full of highly qualified judges. I salute the spirit that you have; I first salute the President of the Higher Judicial Council Judge Suhail Abboud, and I praise your cooperationover the coronavirus epidemic, especially with regard to speeding up trials and adopting remote interrogation.
Last week’s incidents were not normal. There were several crimes, but strangely enough, thecriminal is still unknown.
Attacks on public and private properties. Destruction. Attacks on the army and security forces. Violation of the State’s prestige in all what it represents and its institutions. Road closures.
Who is the perpetrator? Who is the instigator? Who is the executor? Who is the funder? Who is the benefiter?
People still do not know.
Does this mean that the State exists?
People ask about the State’s absence, stating that it does not protect them, nor does it protect their properties.
People ask how the State prepares a police seizure report for a vehicle that violates the alternate circulation decision, a police seizure report for a citizen who does not wear a mask, and easily puts in jail persons who have committed misdemeanors and violations much less severe than the crimes we have seen over the past couple of days.
Today I urge you to play your full role, without the acquiescence of anyone or any authority.
Lebanese people should not feel that the State is not protecting them, and lose their confidence in the judiciary. If people lose faith in the judiciary, then the country would come to an end.
The judiciary should not act only over the past days’ events. The Cassation Public Prosecutionand all public prosecutions must prosecute all offences, all suspicions of corruption and all files. There must be a person responsible for what is happening. We want to put corruption files on the table.
There should be no doubts about everything. Conversely, there is no fair and transparent investigation that holds the perpetrators responsible for their acts, prevents corruption or grants acquittal.
The judiciary is required to be the spearhead in the fight against corruption, waste and suspicious deals.
We highly rely on you, and I hope that you will not allow frustration to grow among people, or lose people's confidence in you. I trust you”.
The interlocutors have discussed in details corruption files and the role of the judiciary in prosecuting corrupt people. PM Press Office