Lebanon Marks Massacre Anniversary

Lebanon marks the anniversary of the massacres in Sabra and Shatila refugee camps while the families of the victims are still waiting for legal action against the criminals.

On September 16, 1982, shortly after the assassination of former President-elect Bashir Gemayel when Lebanon was simultaneously fighting Israel and a civil war, Israeli soldiers occupying Beirut cordoned off Sabra and Shatila Palestinian refugee camps on the outskirts of the capital.

Armed men — widely seen as members of the Lebanese Forces — entered the camps and massacred the unarmed Lebanese and Palestinian residents in a killing spree that lasted for two days.

International sources estimated the number of the casualties of the massacre to stand at 800, while figures obtained by Palestinian officials through the families of the victims reach 3,500.

"It is so important because we see that history goes on and on, we see it in Gaza, we see it here in Lebanon. So it is so important that we have days like to show the situation for Palestinians," a foreign rights activist told Press TV.

The Human Rights Watch in Lebanon has been voicing the urgent need for a just international trial of the perpetrators behind the hideous crime, saying Lebanon has not made enough efforts in this regard.

"The work on international justice has to continue," said Nadim Khoury of the human rights center, noting that the Sabra and Shatila massacre case "is a very specific file."

"They require very specific documentation and a study of which countries are most open for prosecution."

"Before the international community can really help bring justice, Lebanon has to make an effort to seek justice for these victims."

The Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement for its part condemned the "deplorable international silence over these crimes" and the international community’s "negligence" in pursuing the perpetrators and bringing them to justice.

The families of the Shabra and Shatila massacre victims have been calling for the prosecution of Israeli leaders in connection with the killings, including Israel’s former Prime Minister and then Defense Minister Ariel Sharon as the architect of the mass murder.

(Press TV)

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