A Lebanese judge who issued a ruling against the U.S. ambassador to Lebanon and accused her of interfering in the country’s internal affairs, submitted his resignation on Tuesday, state-run news agency and a judicial source said.
Judge Mohamed Mazeh submitted his resignation to the Supreme Judicial Council as soon as he was informed that he would be the subject of a judicial investigation, the National News Agency (NNA) reported.
Mazeh on Saturday issued an order banning local and foreign media outlets in the country from interviewing U.S. Ambassador Dorothy Shea for a year after her remarks against the pro-Iranian Hezbollah movement to the Saudi-owned Al-Hadath news channel.
Mazeh said the comments represented interference in Lebanon’s internal affairs, could incite sectarian strife, and threaten social peace.
According to a judicial source Mazeh was referred to the Judicial Inspection Authority because he caused a diplomatic spat between Lebanon and the U.S. ambassador.
Mazeh was criticised by many Lebanese officials who accused him of trying to curb freedom of expression in Lebanon.
On Monday, the U.S. diplomat said after meeting Lebanon’s Foreign Minister Nassif Hitti, “we turned the page on this unfortunate distraction so we can all focus on the real crisis at hand, which is the deteriorating economic situation in Lebanon.’’
Lebanon is currently suffering its worst economic crisis since the 1975-1990 civil wars.