Greek authorities briefly detain Lebanese Resistance icon Suha Bechara
The Lebanese Communist Party denounces in a statement Bechara’s arrest as a "dangerous precedent".
The Lebanese Communist Party reported on Wednesday that Greek authorities briefly detained Suha Bechara, a Lebanese Resistance icon and liberated prisoner, on Tuesday night at Athens airport, during a transit on her way to Switzerland, where she is a citizen, Lebanese media reported.
Omar Al-Deeb, the head of the party's political office, explained that Greek authorities told Bechara that she was considered a "persona non grata" and "poses a threat to Greek national security."
The Lebanese news website L’Orient Today quoted Adnan Bechara, Suha's brother, as saying, "We immediately contacted the Lebanese embassy in Greece, Swiss authorities, and lawyers. We have many friends who were keen on helping Suha get released."
"Eventually they told us that they can’t allow her to leave directly to Geneva, Switzerland where she was heading because that would be a violation of the decision to not allow her into Greece, so she was sent back to Lebanon for a transit before flying back to Switzerland," he pointed out.
"We will follow up on what happened to get to the bottom of who initiated this move. We want to know whether this is a mistake or whether it’s an attack on the left or on us personally. We have many friends within the European Union’s parliament, and many European politicians who are friends and we will not be silent," he told L’Orient Today.
On its part, the Lebanese Communist Party denounced in a statement Bechara’s arrest as a "dangerous precedent which constitutes a flagrant attack against a Lebanese national heroine who contributed to achieving liberation and freedom for the Lebanese, and spent 10 years in captivity in the Khiam detention camp, which is famous for its inhumane torture practices that were documented by international organizations, including the International Red Cross," as cited by Lebanese media.
The party also urged the "Greek government to arrest the Zionist officials who established the Khiam detention center and supervised the torture of Suha Bechara and thousands of Lebanese, instead of arresting patriots."
The statement also called on the Lebanese Foreign Ministry to "summon the Greek ambassador immediately and take strict measures, and to consider the arrest an attack on Lebanon's national sovereignty and the freedom and security of its citizens."
In 1988, Bechara was detained for attempting to assassinate the leader of the Israeli-backed so-called South Lebanon Army (SLA), Antoine Lahad, whose left arm was paralyzed as a result of the operation.
After being interrogated and beaten, Bechara, 21 years old back then, was held in the Khiam detention camp for 10 years, where she was subjected to different types of torture and spent six years of solitary confinement in a tiny cell.
Following a huge international campaign, Bechara was released on September 3, 1998.