A man identified as A.Gh. was accused of committing a crime against religion, according to
. The incident occurred yesterday in Rmeileh, Chouf. Judge Nadim Al Nachef decided to release him only if he memorizes a verse about Virgin Mary from the Quran by Monday. Article 473 of the Lebanese Penal Code states that offending religion is a crime and the offender can spend up to one year in prison. In February, three young men that are between the ages of 16 and 18 were accused of insulting Virgin Mary in a church in Menjez Akkar. Judge Joceline Matta had a different perspective on this matter. She believes that education is the best solution. Instead of sending them to jail, she told the young men that they could avoid prison if they memorize several verses of the Surat al-Omran, which praises Mary, from the Quran. Many applauded Matta’s sentencing as it fosters education. Prime Minister Saad Hariri praised Judge Matta for her wise decision that will benefit the men and the Lebanese society.
تحية لقاضي التحقيق في الشمال الرئيسة #جوسلين_متى. حكمها على الشبان في قضية السيدة مريم، وإلزامهم بحفظ سورة آل عمران من القرآن الكريم، قمة في العدالة وتعليم المفاهيم المشتركة بين المسلمين والمسيحين.
— Saad Hariri (@saadhariri) February 10, 2018
Kudos to Judge Matta! Her brilliant decision positively impacted not only the accused men but also the strategy other Lebanese judges will adopt when facing a similar situation in the future.