Beirut Bar Association head Andre Chidiac attends a conference in Beirut, Monday, Nov. 12, 2018. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)
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A shout broke out at the Justice Palace when Andre Chidiac, president of the Beirut Bar Association, announced the end of the association's protest against the Lebanese judiciary Monday.The protest was organized after Lebanese judges repeatedly filed complaints against lawyers in contravention of the "principle of immunity" granted them under Lebanese law, the association alleged. Under that principle, lawyers cannot be interrogated about crimes attributed to them without prior authorization from the association's president, subject to appeal that, it argued, the complainant judges never secured. The law in question protects both lawyers and the Lebanese legal system as a whole, Joe Karam, president of the International Relations Committee of the Bar, said.Though Chidiac had warned that more violations could provoke a lawyers' strike, Abbas and many of his colleagues had hoped for immediate action or "at least a boycott".
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