Reinstate Judge Bitar: 'Why Did Our Loved Ones Die in The Beirut Blast'

Published January 18th, 2022 - 08:52 GMT
Lebanese relatives of victims of the August 4, 2020 Beirut port explosion
Lebanese relatives of victims of the August 4, 2020 Beirut port explosion hold up portraits of their loved ones who died in the massive explosion, while others set tyres on fire during a sit-in outside the Justice Palace, in Beirut on Jan. 17, 2022. (AFP)

ALBAWABA - Lebanese continue to rally out the Palace of Justice in Beirut in support of the investigating judge Tarek Bitar who is looking into the deadly 2020 August Beirut Port Blast that literally ripped the capital into smithereens. 

Bitar's work has been continuously frustrated and today his investigation stands in limbo due to the interests of different political parties. The latest protests in the centre of the Lebanese capital by ordinary people and by families of the victims of the blast is made to keep the pressure on and get to the bottom of the biggest catastrophe. 

They want Bitar to be reinstated and examine the deadly blast that shattered the city with 217 killed, over 7000 injured and over 300,000 people displaced. It was a complete devastation. The families want to know what happened and why their loved one had to die. Its a terrible tragedy. 

As well, they want to know how did a fire in one warehouse led to a large inferno and a blast and who was behind the 2,750 tons of the ammonium nitrate that exploded on that August evening in the Beirut Port and sent the city into a deadly tailspin of bloodiness, deaths and destruction. In whose interest was it to unload the deadly nitrate on the Beirut Port and why store it there since 2013.

Meanwhile and as reported in the Naharnet website that Prime Minister Najib Miqati denied Monday that the presence of a bargain with the families of the port victims, in return for the resumption of Cabinet meetings is being considered.

The Lebanese daily stated that Miqati's media office negated in a statement that the Prime Minister coordinated with the families of the victims to file new lawsuits against lead investigator into the case Judge Tarek Bitar.

"A newspaper reported today that Miqati had secretly asked some parties to coordinate with the families to file lawsuits against Bitar accusing him of selectivity," the statement said, stressing Miqati's stance is against interfering in the judiciary work.

Meanwhile, families of the Beirut port blast victims have blocked the road outside the Justice Palace in Beirut with burning tires.

Arab News carried a full report on the protest saying: The protesters blocked roads and entrances at the Palace of Justice to express their “anger and deep sense of the injustice inflicted on them by all those who submit requests to reject the work of judicial investigator Judge Tarek Bitar.”

The Saudi daily added: The families accuse authorities of “negligence, ignoring and covering up the crime and the catastrophe of the biggest explosion in modern history that afflicted Lebanon and Beirut” and adding they will call for an international investigation “if stagnation and threats continue, and the case is diluted.”

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