Friday, January 12, 2007


A Women's Right

The bizarre and twisted tale of Melissa Hawach has taken another turn. Joseph Hawach, who is up on his own kidnapping charges in Canada for taking his own children, is believed to be talking to Interpol about international warrants that mean he cannot leave Lebanon for fear of arrest.

Joseph Hawach took Australian-born Hannah, 5, and Canadian-born Cedar, 3, from their mother, Melissa, in Sydney last July. In December she took them back with the help of two mercenaries who have since been arrested in Lebanon.

Hawach's lawyer - Tony Habib Tebchrany - said his client is willing to drop Lebanese child-abduction charges against his former wife and her helpers (Melissa is alleged to have hired some muscle and two of the reported four-man team of former soldiers who helped retrieve her children, Brian Corrigan from Sydney and David Pemberton from New Zealand, were arrested at Beirut airport shortly after the operation and now face up to three years' hard labour if convicted on child abduction charges)if she returned the children. A scenerio not likely to occur during this eon.

Mr Hawach is wanted by Interpol on charges of having abducted the children from their mother when he took them from Australia to his ancestral Lebanon last year and also stands accused of embezzlement and bank fraud in Canada, where he allegedly presided over the bankruptcy of a business set up with his former wife's family.

Mr Tebchrany said his client had broken no Lebanese law when he failed to return the two children to their mother after she allowed them to holiday with him in Sydney last year. He said that as the couple was originally married in a Maronite church in Sydney the marriage was subject to a distinctive Maronite canon law. Tebchrany also reinstated that Joseph Hawach is ready to drop all the cases against Melissa, and everyone involved with her, if the children are returned.

After he brought the children to Lebanon during last year's war with Israel, Mr Hawach had obtained a ruling from a Maronite church court that he was the legal guardian, the lawyer said. He said any previous court orders awarding custody to the mother had no force in Lebanon, where custody was normally awarded to father. Mr Tebchrany said Ms Hawach had made no attempt to pursue her case in the Lebanese courts before snatching her children.
Here is hoping that everything works out for Melissa.

It should be interesting to see how the Melissa Hawach saga all pans out. Do you think that Jim Engdahl greased a few palms to help recover the Hawach children, more specifically government officials or bureaucrats?

Interesting that all the publicity in this unfortunate incident has been biased in favour of Melissa.

Should you wish to follow up on this story I suggest you keep a close watch on my blog Crooked in Canada. In it you will hear the other side of the story.

Nice blog by the way.
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