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Monday, May 27, 2024

Lebanese Central Bank Governor Faces Arrest Warrant and Travel Ban

Lebanese Central Bank Governor Faces Arrest Warrant and Travel Ban

The Lebanese Central Bank Governor, Riad Salameh, was banned from traveling by a Lebanese judge after a French arrest warrant was issued for him.
The judge questioned Salameh before releasing him pending investigation and confiscating his Lebanese and French passports.

Salameh is accused of corruption in European banks and is being investigated by the French and European judiciaries.

Aude Buresi, a French judge, issued an international arrest warrant against Salameh after he failed to appear at his interrogation session in Paris.

The German consul in Lebanon also informed the Lebanese prosecutor general about the issuance of a German arrest warrant against Salameh.

The investigations focus on the relationship between the central bank of Lebanon and the company Forry Associates registered in the Virgin Islands, with an office in Beirut, which is suspected of being a shell company used to transfer money from Lebanon to European countries, amounting to more than $330 million, which is suspected to have been embezzled from the central bank.

Salameh's term as the bank governor ends at the end of July, and the debate in political circles focuses on his successor, given the presidential vacancy, the caretaker government, and the repercussions of Salameh's legal pursuit in Lebanon and abroad on Lebanon's financial and economic reputation.

The Lebanese government is unable to dismiss the governor of the Central Bank, Salameh, and is instead calling on him to resign.

MP Qassem Hashem stated that the judicial process against Salameh is proceeding legally and that he hopes the presidential election will be completed before the end of July, the end of Salameh's term.

If the election is not held by then, the government, even if it is caretaker, may appoint a new governor with political support from all political forces, or the deputy governor may assume the responsibilities of the governorship temporarily to maintain financial and monetary stability in the country.

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