The judge investigating the 2020 Beirut port explosion has charged Lebanon’s then-prime minister, Hassan Diab,

and two other former ministers with homicide with probable intent, according to a court summons seen by the Reuters news agency.

Other top officials, including the country’s public prosecutor and the head of the domestic intelligence agency, were also charged in connection with the blast

Judge Tarek Bitar, who has unexpectedly resumed an inquiry that has been paralysed by high-level political resistance, has scheduled questioning with Prosecutor General Ghassan Oweidat for February.

However, the public prosecutor’s office has disputed Bitar’s authority to issue the charges, according to correspondence seen by Reuters.

Bitar’s efforts to interrogate top officials over the explosion, which killed at least 218 people and shattered parts of Beirut, have been hindered by factions including heavily armed

Bitar charged Major General Abbas Ibrahim, head of Lebanon’s domestic intelligence agency, and Major General Tony Saliba, head of another security body,

in connection with the blast as well as former army commander Jean Kahwaji, judicial officials said, without specifying the charges.