BEIRUT: Maronite Patriarch Beshara Rai appealed for the release of two Orthodox bishops kidnapped and held in Syria, saying they should be set free in the name of humanity.
Rai’s pleas were made while he was celebrating Mass in Our Lady of Lebanon Church in Brazil, where he is on an official visit.
Aleppo’s Greek Orthodox Archbishop Paul Yazigi and Syriac Orthodox Archbishop Yohanna Ibrahim were kidnapped April 22 by armed men as they were en route to the northern city from the Turkish border.
Rai said all parties involved in the kidnappings should “play a part in their release,” and stressed that “the kidnap of the two bishops has nothing to do with current political disputes.”
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on April 30, 2013, on page 4.