Remembering Lebanon - Mémoire du Liban

12/29/2005

FADI MOUHANNA'S DEPOSITION

FADI MOUHANNA'S DEPOSITION

Indeed I am not going to repeat what my colleague Jihad Sleiman has reported. Allow me to reveal to you how we were detained with Dr. Samir Geagea and the ordeals we have encountered. My name is Fadi Muhana, I am a Lebanese National born in Lebanon and I was appointed as the bodyguard of Dr. Geagea's wife Mrs. Sethrida for the period of three and a half years and my domain was only set on this protection.

During 21st of April, a Colonel in the Lebanese Army called "Salloum" came to arrest Dr. Geagea and drove him to the Ministry of Defense. Colonel "Salloum" has given his word of honour to keep Mrs. Sethrida 's guards whom she already has for her protection, but he failed to keep his promise by appearing half an hour later and arresting everyone in "Ghadres" throwing them inside a military truck like animals regardless of any sense of humanity. Elderly people, women and men were abducted and they stole everything that they could lay their hands upon. All the arrests and thefts took place without any legal basis or any warrants of arrests. Despite all this the judges are reluctant to address this issue and have stated that all has been well.

I want to stress that the Ministry of Defense is not a prison by anybody's standard. It is more a torture centre falling directly under the control of the Intelligence Services. In reality it is a butchery place. This is the most suitable description:

1)"The Ballanco": On many occasions we have had our wrists cuffed behind our back and wrapped with pieces of clothes in order to avoid slipping. The handcuffs are attached with a rope through a pulley on the ceiling and down unto the soldiers hands. The rope is pulled and all our body weight is carried by our shoulder joints backwards. The nerves crossing the shoulder are pulled and stretched causing serious damage and severe pain to the extent of collapse.

2)"The flying Carpet": They would put us flat facing the ground, the chair is put on our backs in order to tighten our limbs forcefully against the legs and back of the chair and bend us the opposite way by pulling the rope rigidly between our legs and arms the opposite direction. I do not need to mention the agony and endless torment we got exposed to. The kicking on the head and the electric shocks whilst in this position resulted in serious damages to our back. We are still suffering from back pain today.

3) "Al Falak": whipping the sole of the feet with electric wires or whips is a familiar means of torture in the Ministry of Defense. They would lay us flat on our backs, our legs raised high and tied onto the chairs with a rope and whipping our barefoot with electric wires until they bleed profusely.

4) "Electric Shocks": They utilise an electric rod which produces a very high voltage and use it on our eyes, arms, legs, groins and other parts of our bodies. They used to order one of the soldiers to take a photo of us after electrocution in order to show it to us "before we meet our maker".

5) "Air Injections": They would threaten us to inject our bodies with air before getting the coroner to make a report of "heart attack". They threatened to throw our bodies in Babda Hospital 's morgue (Government Hospital) and in three days our bodies will be picked up by our families who would not be able to prove anything. This is precisely how the late Mr. Fawzi Al Rasi was killed. The Government refused an independent autopsy to be performed and the coffin was not allowed to be opened . The family was unable to see Mr. Al Rasi after his murder. Moreover I would like to mention that all hospitals were threatened and strictly ordered not to give any medical reports on any sign of torture after we were released from the Ministry of Defense.

6) "The stick stand": They would make us stand days, our chins leaning on a pointed, tall wooden stick, handcuffed backwards and absolutely motionless. If any sudden movement occurs beatings, electric shocks and whippings would fall upon us. They would even make a game of how long we can endure this suffering. I distinctly remember how I stood in such a position from a Thursday evening until Sunday.

Adding to our extremely painful physical torture, they utilised psychological torment by making up sexual stories about our families. They wanted to break us psychologically. They made us see Dr. Geagea blindfolded, handcuffed and standing by the wall, legs apart and told us: "Go and tell others what you have witnessed, your cause is over, tell us everything you know, save yourself now that your leader is finished".

I was detained, tortured and released without any reason nor any legal justification or formality. Upon my release I was threatened not to be involved in politics, social activities, or even clubs nor to take part in any normal gathering where it involves friends or otherwise they would capture me again. In addition, I had to be ready to be called in at any time they wish, even during midnight and the early hours of the morning and had to unwillingly be driven to the Ministry of Defense. Therefore, it took me a great deal of thoughts and determination to come to the decision of leaving my beloved country denied of essential freedom and searching for Human Rights, security and peace.

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