By Wasim Saif al-Din
The Lebanese judiciary on Friday handed down death sentences against two defendants accused -- in absentia -- of assassinating Lebanese President-elect Bachir Gemayel in 1982.
Ten days after being elected president by Lebanon’s parliament, Gemayel was killed by a car-bomb explosion in Beirut.
On Friday, Lebanon’s Council of Justice sentenced the only two defendants in the case -- Habib Shartouni and Nabil al-Alam, both of whom remain at large -- to death.
Gemayel emerged in the late 1970s, during Lebanon’s bloody civil war, as a leader of the right-wing Christian Phalangist militia.
In 1980, he succeeded his father to the leadership of the Lebanese Phalanges Party, which played a role in Beirut’s infamous 1982 Sabra and Shatila massacre.