30 August 2016

Lebanon: A Minor Tortured by the Military Intelligence Prosecuted for “Terrorism”

PIC: Military Tribunal, Beirut, credits: Al-Joumhouria,  PIC: Military Tribunal, Beirut, credits: Al-Joumhouria,

On 12 September 2014, Walid Diab, 16 year old at the time, was arrested at a military checkpoint upon information of “secret informants”. Secretly detained for three months and severely tortured despite his young age, he is currently facing trial before the Military Court; his next hearing will be held on 26 September 2016. Concerned over the gravity of these violations suffered by a minor, Alkarama wrote to the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) to demand the urgent intervention of the five UN experts with the Lebanese authorities to demand that Walid be released and his allegations of torture investigated.

On 12 September 2014, Walid was arrested when he reached a military checkpoint next to his house in Tripoli without the soldiers showing him an arrest warrant or explaining him the reason of his arrest. He was then taken to an unknown location where he remained for three months without any contact with the outside world. When his mother could visit him for the first time, she could not recognise her son since he had lost a lot of weight and had bruises and other wounds on his body. Walid told her that during his first month of detention in the military intelligence premises in Hanna Ghostine Barracks in Araman, north Lebanon, he had been severely tortured, including electrocuted, hanged with his wrists behind his back, beaten and denied food and water. It is under torture that he was then forced to confess being a “member of a terrorist group”.

On 20 October 2014, Walid was indicted by the judge of the Military Court for being “a member of a terrorist group” on the basis of the statements extracted under torture. Despite the fact that Walid’s allegations of torture were raised before the investigating judge on 14 October 2014, the judge simply dismissed them. Since his trial began in early 2015, it was adjourned for at least five times, and the next session is to be held on 29 September 2016.

“We are extremely concerned over Walid’s case, which is all the more concerning due to his young age. Individuals accused of terrorism are commonly subjected to severe violations of their fundamental rights such as incommunicado detention, torture and the extraction of confessions that are then used as evidence in trials before the Military Court,” says Inès Osman, Legal Coordinator at Alkarama. “Walid’s allegations of torture must be subjected to an independent and thorough investigation and should he be subjected to trial, it must be carried out within a juvenile justice system ensuring all the guarantees of fair trial.”

For more information or an interview, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (Dir: +41 22 734 1008).

support us
follow_fb follow_tw follow_yt

algeria report cover page FR