The fate of captured soldiers rests on impossible conditions
An-Nahar obtained information that the militants increased their demands and refused to budge on the release of 10 detainees in Roumieh prison in exchange for one soldier. A list of names of 23 detainees was sent to the Army’s leadership, including detainees of different nationalities, those accused of involvement in terrorist bombings and Imad Jomaa.
An-Nahar also asked Prime Minister Tammam Salam about the Muslim scholars' decision to suspend their mediation efforts. He said he preferred to remain tight-lipped so that they could safely return the captured soldiers. "We will not abandon them," he said, adding that he was personally following every detail of the case.
Ankara, Doha and Beirut are negotiating the release of the soldiers
As-Safir published the names of the captured soldiers after obtaining them from Lebanese military sources: the names included 20 soldiers and 15 members of the Internal Security Forces who were captured by militants.
Arab diplomatic sources in Ankara told As-Safir that the head of the Turkish intelligence and the head of the Qatari intelligence, as well as head of General Security Maj. Gen. Abbas Ibrahim, have begun working on the case of the captured soldiers. Their work is in line with a decision by Qatari and Turkish authorities in coordination with the Lebanese government and head of the Future Movement Saad Hariri.
Ibrahim had met the Turkish and Qatari officials three days ago before traveling to Doha where he received assurances that Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad al-Thani would offer everything to facilitate the release of the captured soldiers. The sources also said that a Lebanese, Turkish and Qatari committee was formed and comprised of officers from these countries.
Berri: We wasted the opportunity
Speaker Nabih Berri sad it was unfortunate that the Lebanese "wasted the opportunity to elect a president via a purely Lebanese decision."
"If it wasn't for narrow personal interests and verbal altercations, Lebanon would have been, in this critical time, a beacon of the East and able to defend the rights of Palestinians and everyone who is being persecuted, primarily the Christians who were forced to migrate,” he said.
The Army between ISIS and the domestic anvil
Sources close to Prime Minister Tammam Salam said he was very clear with the Committee of Muslim Scholars that the government would not be involved in a barter deal with the kidnappers; a deal that could negatively affect the moral of the military institution and security agencies. He also warned the delegation against attempts to blackmail the government.
Before meeting the committee, Salam held talks with a number of ministers so see what steps he should be taking. The ministers told him to remain firm and not to be lenient with terrorist groups and not become a prey to a project that would manipulate the case.