Samir Geagea, the Lebanese Forces Leader, is Released After Spending Eleven Years in a Solitary Confinement

The Lebanese Parliament passed an amnesty bill on 18 July 2005 to free Samir Geagea.

It was subsequently signed by President Émile Lahoud. Geagea was released from prison on July 26, 2005 and left Lebanon for medical care. He returned to Lebanon on October 25 (his birthday), and lived in the Cedars region in northern Lebanon until December 11, 2006, after which he moved to a hotel in Bzoummar in Keserwan.

Lebanese Christian militia leader Samir Geagea has been freed from prison after serving 11 years for crimes committed during the country's civil war.

Mr Geagea, who led the Lebanese Forces (LF) militia which formed an alliance with Israel, was granted an amnesty by parliament last week.

He was the only Lebanese warlord to be punished for crimes during the 15-year civil war, which ended in 1990.

Mr Geagea, 52, is expected to leave Lebanon for medical tests.

They were long, dark, black years”

— Samir Geagea

Geagea was released from prison 26 July 2005 and left Lebanon for medical tests. "I have spent 11 horrific years in solitary confinement in a 6-square-meter dungeon three floors underground without sunlight or fresh air. But I endured my hardships because I was merely living my convictions," he was quoted saying upon his release. He returned on October 25 (the day of his birth), and currently lives in the cedars region in north Lebanon.

Samir Geagea left jail a free man Tuesday, July 26, 2005, after spending 11 years, three months and five days in jail at the defense ministry compound in Yarze, an all-time record for a prisoner of conscience in Lebanon's chronicled history. His freedom lowers the final curtain on the lingering fallout of the Lebanese civil war.

Lebanon's unrivaled celebrity prisoner made his first public appearance to the VIP lounge at Beirut's Rafik Hariri International Airport at 11 a.m. local time to make his first televised address to the nation, pledging to spare no effort to navigate Lebanon out of its state of weightlessness.