Caretaker Information Minister Walid Daouk condemned on Friday the assault against a number of on-duty reporters in Abra by some sullen saboteurs.
"It is unfortunate and sad that the media keeps paying the price for freedom of expression," he regretted, saying verbal denunciation is not sufficient - each time the Lebanese media is assaulted - without taking measures to prevent the reoccurrence of such attacks.
"This aggression will not go unpunished," Daouk said, stressing that "everyone is required to take decisive and bold steps that guarantee the freedom of expression, which is considered sacred, and which shall be safeguarded in order to provide the least minimum of protection to media reporters, journalists or photographers."
He believed that "the language of condemnation and denunciation is no longer useful with those who violate sacred places and allow themselves to attack media men."
"Instead of rewarding the media staff in recognition of their role and their mission, we see some people daring to attack and assault them," the Minister said regrettably.
Accordingly, he called on the Lebanese judiciary to take immediate action to punish them, and urged the security forces to protect media reporters from any mental or physical abuse, providing them with favorable climates for exercising their duties at the events' sites.
"For the last time we warn that we will no longer tolerate considering the media as a scapegoat. The freedom of speech is sacred; It is the reason for Lebanon's existence," he concluded.