Montreal, Canada - June 30, 2005

June 2005 - Vol. 22

RCPL June 2005 Newsletter includes the following items:

1.
First parliamentary election after syrian withdrawal from Lebanon
2. Series of explosion targeted anti-syrian figures
3. Hundreds of Lebanese still detained illegally in Syria



1. First parliamentary election after syrian withdrawal from Lebanon

Parliamentary elections took place in Lebanon four successive Sundays starting on May 29 and ending on june 19. These elections mark the first time in 30 years that Lebanese have voted without the presence of troops from neighboring Syria. Observers from different countries including EU, Canada were deployed in various parts of Lebanon.

While some reports claimed that some parties used their power to buy votes, RCPL urges the international observers to investigate these cases.


2. Series of explosion targeted anti-syrian figures

On june 2, a car bomb exploded in Achrafieh in a heavily populated commercial center, targeted Samir Kassir, a journalist for Al-Nahar and a long outspoken critic of Syria and pro-Syrian government officials.

On june 21, Georges Hawi, a former Communist Party chief who was a harsh critic of Syrian meddling in Lebanese affairs, was killed in a bomb as he rode in his car in Beirut.

These explosions came after a series of explosions targeted commercial and religious sites in Kaslik, Jdeideh, Broumana, Jounieh and Dhour El-Chwair since March 2005.

RCPL condemns the terrorist attacks and hopes the perpetrators are brought to justice. RCPL re-calls on the Lebanese government and security forces to take effective action to ensure the security of all citizens.


3. Hundreds of Lebanese still detained illegally in Syria

On April 11, relatives of about 280 Lebanese citizens imprisoned in Syria began an open-ended hunger strike in front of the headquarters of the United Nations in Beirut, demanding the release of all Lebanese detainees. Since than, and after the Syrian withdrawal, this number has been increased to 600 lebaneses illegally detained in Syria.

More than two months have been passed since the beginning of the strike and Syrian authorities are always denying the existence of the prisoners, and the Lebanese government is ignoring the issue.

RCPL is concerned about the fate of hundreds of lebaneses still detained in Syria since 1975 and believes that Syria must release immediately all lebanese detainees from its prison and return the remains of detainees killed in Syrian prisons under torture or by execution.

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