After years of persistent demands, a historic judicial precedent has been set as French criminal investigative judges issue arrest warrants for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad while he remains in power. Ibrahim al-Olabi, the head of the Syrian Legal Development Program, expresses concern that these warrants may complicate Assad’s participation in the World Climate Action Summit.
To meet legal requirements, Olabi emphasizes that the UAE must either prevent Assad’s presence or take steps to arrest him if he attends, as stipulated by the extradition and legal cooperation agreements signed between France and the UAE in 2007. While Olabi anticipates that the arrest warrants will be communicated to international systems, including Interpol, as of now, they have not been publicly circulated.
International criminal law expert Mu’tasim al-Kilani concurs with Olabi, asserting that the issue underscores the judiciary’s pressure on the signatory state to the extradition agreement. In the event of Bashar al-Assad’s presence, Kilani predicts that the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs will request the UAE Foreign Ministry’s cooperation, facilitated through the French Ministry of Justice, for the extradition of Assad.
Drawing a parallel, Kilani cites the case of Major General Jamil Hassan, the former head of the Syrian regime’s Air Force Intelligence, who faced an official extradition request from Germany while receiving medical treatment in a Lebanese hospital.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.