Former Lebanese Army Commander Just Testified Over Beirut Blast

Former Lebanese Army Commander Just Testified Over Beirut Blast
The Daily Star/Mohamad Azakir

General Jean Kahwaji, former Commander of the Lebanese Armed Forces, testified on Thursday in relation to the Beirut Port explosion.

Judicial investigator Judge Fadi Sawan, who is leading the probe into the deadly August 4th blast, listened to Kahwaji for an hour and a half, Al-Jadeed reported. The former military officer testified as a witness in the case.

Kahwaji was the army commander when 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate were stored in the Port of , ultimately detonating in an explosion that killed more than 200 people, injured thousands, and displaced more than 300,000 back in August.

His summoning by Sawan came after the latter resumed the investigation after a nearly 2-month hiatus. The pause in the probe came after the judge charged two former ministers, who subsequently requested Sawan’s removal from the case.

Journalist Radwan Mortada recently blasted the former army commander, as well as the current one, General Joseph Aoun, for failing to remove the dangerous materials from the port, calling for their interrogation.

His remarks resulted in his summoning for questioning by the military court.

The long delay in the Beirut blast probe has repeatedly provoked protests in as well as critical remarks from world leaders and diplomats, including French Ambassador to Anne Grillo, who called it “unacceptable” in a recent statement.

Meanwhile, the German firm tasked with clearing dangerous materials at the Port of described them as “a second bomb” threatening to hit the ravaged city with a new catastrophe.


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