The case of Ziad Itani, a Lebanese theatre playwright who was arrested by state security in November over accusations of collaborating with Israel, is the “perfect” case to expose the deficiencies in the core of Lebanon’s political life.
Itani belongs to a renowned family, the largest Sunni family in Beirut. Interior Minister Nohad al-Machnouk, who is a Sunni figure in the Future Movement, highlighted the significance of the Itani family after it was reported that Ziad is innocent and that Suzan al-Hajj, the former head of cybercrime in the Internal Security Forces, fabricated the case against Itani.
The decision to convict or clear Ziad or Susan of all charges is supposed to be limited to the judiciary. However, what’s supposed to happen is one thing, and what happens is something else.Mashari Althaydi
Hajj is being interrogated now, and magic has turned on the magician. Itani’s case sparked political and sectarian debates between Hajj’s and Itani’s supporters, i.e. between the supporters of Bashar al-Assad and Hassan Nasrallah, and between the allies of the Syrian people and people who admire Saudi Arabia in a division that may seem disruptive.