Ghosn: ‘My Return to Lebanon is My Rebirth’

NEW YORK — In a statement issued to The Yomiuri Shimbun on Dec. 28, former Nissan Motor Co. Chairman Carlos Ghosn reiterated his criticism of Japan’s judicial system and talked about his future activities.

“My return to Lebanon is my rebirth,” Ghosn said at the beginning of his statement, describing his escape a year ago from Japan to Lebanon.

Ghosn was arrested in November 2018 and fled at the end of December 2019 after being released on bail. In the statement, he claimed that he had engaged in “over a year of fighting against a justice system that violated my human rights, where the presumption of innocence doesn’t exist.”

He accused the system of being “hostage justice.”

Ghosn also said, “I have great respect for the Japanese people, customs and culture,” adding, “I would not have left Japan, if the condition of a fair trial existed, if they had not violated my human rights.”

By claiming that Japan’s judicial system was the cause of his departure from Japan, a country of which he says he is fond, Ghosn is apparently trying to justify his escape once again.

The statement also referred to an opinion released in November by a working group of the U.N. Human Rights Council that criticized Japanese authorities’ arrest and detention of Ghosn as “an abuse of process.” The Japanese government filed an objection to the opinion in response, insisting that it “contains obvious factual errors.”

In his statement Ghosn claimed, “My lawyers are confident that based on this opinion, all proceedings against me based on the Japanese case … are illegal.”

As for the future, Ghosn revealed that he will teach a business course at the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik and support local companies to promote economic growth in Lebanon, which is in a difficult situation. He also said he had written a book that would be published in Japan before summer 2021.