Lebanon News

Turkish man kidnapped northeast of Beirut

BEIRUT: A Turkish man and one Lebanese were kidnapped in separate incidents northeast of Beirut, security sources told The Daily Star Friday.

Turkish Abdulbasit Arslan was in his Mercedes truck in the Mount Lebanon town of Shoueifat when a group of men dragged him out and drove off to an unknown destination at dawn Friday.

The Meqdad family, who kidnapped over 20 Syrians and a Turkish national earlier this week in retaliation for the abduction of their relative in Damascus, said they were not responsible for Thursday's kidnapping of the Turkish man.

Maher Meqdad, spokesperson for the family, was quoted by local media as saying: "The family has no links to the kidnapping of Raja Zoheiry or the Turkish national in Choueifat last night."

Zoheiry, a businessman, was kidnapped in Aramoun, Mount Lebanon, Thursday afternoon. His abductors have demanded a $1 million ransom, according to his family.

Meanwhile, several men kidnapped Imad Shafiq al-Baeeni in Baaqline in the Chouf Friday morning, however he was released several hours later when Baeeni's family resolved the issue, according to security sources

The sources said that the kidnappers owned a car hire company and that Baeeni was abducted over a dispute related to the payment for a rental car.

Lebanon has witnessed a spree of kidnappings this week starting with the Meqdad family's abductions Wednesday and then the kidnapping of 11 Syrians Thursday.

Ten of those snatched Thursday were taken by a previously unknown group who have demanded the release of 11 Lebanese pilgrims kidnapped in Syria two months ago.





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