BEIRUT: President Michel Sleiman denounced Tuesday the recent wave of tit-for-tat kidnappings as an act against Lebanese traditions and urged security forces to exert extra efforts to secure the release of the hostages.
“We denounce the kidnappings that have been carried out by gangs, it is against Lebanese customs,” Sleiman told a delegation from the Jaafar clan.
“The law must prevail, and so must coexistence,” Sleiman stressed.
Last month saw the end of a spate of retaliatory kidnappings between rival camps in the Bekaa Valley, east Lebanon. The kidnappings were sparked by the abducition of Hussein Kamel Jaafar, which resulted in the retaliatory kidnappings of 11 people from Arsal by his family. Seven hostages were released a few days later by the Jaafar clan as a goodwill gesture.
Sleiman said officials were working hard to secure Jaafar’s release.
The president also denounced yesterday’s kidnappings in the region of Wadi Khaled.
On Monday, Lebanese gunmen from the al-Ahmad tribe kidnapped eight Syrian Alawite workers in Wadi Khaled in order to exchange them for a relative held by Syrian authorities, a security source told The Daily Star.