Former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn met Michel Aoun, Lebanon’s president, after escaping from Japan, where he was smuggled out of house arrest by a private security firm, two sources close to Ghosn stated on Wednesday.
One of the sources stated Ghosn was greeted warmly by Michel Aoun on Monday after flying into Beirut from Istanbul and finally felt secure.
The strategy to take Ghosn out of Japan, which marked the recent twist in a year-old saga that has shocked the global auto industry, was crafted over three months, the two sources stated.
“It was a very professional operation from start to finish,” one of them informed.
In his meeting at the presidency, Ghosn thanked Aoun for lending support and his wife Carole while he was being detained, the sources stated. He now requires the protection and security of his government after escaping Japan, the sources said.
No details of this meeting between Aoun and Ghosn have been made public as of now and a media adviser to the president’s office rejected the two men had met. The two sources stated specifics of the meeting were told to them by Ghosn.
Ghosn remains silent publicly. Though he had written a statement shortly after his departure from Japan, saying he had “escaped injustice and political persecution”.
Lebanese officials have stated there would be no necessity to take legal measures against Ghosn because he entered the country lawfully on a French passport, although Ghosn’s French, Lebanese and Brazilian passports are with his lawyers in Japan.
The French and Lebanese foreign ministries have stated they don’t know about the circumstances of his journey.
Lebanon lacks extradition agreement with Japan, thus making it hard for Lebanon to hand over Ghosn to Japan.