Riot at Lebanon’s Roumieh prison contained

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Prison officials have contained a riot that erupted at Lebanon’s largest prison late Tuesday.

Commenting on events at Roumieh prison, Interior Minister Marwan Charbel said Tuesday the brief unrest at the prison was sparked by a protest over officers tallying the number of Islamist prisoners held at the detention facility.

“During the counting of Islamist prisoners at Roumieh prison, they expressed dismay at the census which resulted in some form of chaos,” Charbel told a local radio station.

Islamist inmates have repeatedly rioted at Roumieh and demanded speedy trials.

Lebanon’s prosecutor Hatem Madi announced Saturday that the long-awaited trials for dozens of suspected Fatah al-Islam members would begin in February of this year.

Madi attributed the delay in commencing the trials to the completion of the courtroom at Roumieh.

He told The Daily Star Saturday that there are 480 individuals suspected of involvement in the 2007 battle with the Lebanese Army in the northern Palestinian refugee camp of Nahr al-Bared. Of those, around 200 are awaiting trial in Roumieh, according to Madi. Others are wanted, or have died or escaped from the prison.

 

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