Wave of kidnappings continues in Lebanon , update


Despite the enhanced security measures to fight the abductions, the wave of kidnappings continues in Lebanon.

Four masked gunmen kidnapped the 55 year old Lebanese citizen Bassel Mahmoud Al Mays on Saturday evening. The abductors also stole the Nissan Pathfinder ( plate number: 150758/Z) car Mays and his wife were riding.

Bassel’s wife, whom the kidnappers let go, told LBCI that the incident happened near their house in Meksah-Bekaa, as they returned from a wedding.

Several kidnappings have taken place in Lebanon recently. Te abductors have also been demanding ransoms as high as $15 million.

The Cabinet met last Wednesday at Baabda Palace to discuss the kidnapping wave. Prior to the Baabda meeting , Prime Minister Najib Mikati discussed the issue with Interior Minister Marwan Charbel, Justice Minister Shakib Qortbawi and senior security officers at the Grand Serail.

“The kidnap-for-ransom phenomenon hits the prestige of the state and strikes at the heart of stability,” Mikati told reporters at the end of the Grand Serail meeting.

“The security services must take stringent and precautionary measures to prevent the recurrence of such condemn-able incidents,” he added.

Following the meeting Charbel told reporters that the Lebanese security forces will be able to put an end to the kidnappings within one week. He did not elaborate on how the security forces intend to do it.

Update: Kidnapped victim escapes

Mays escaped from his abductors, National News Agency reported on Monday.

According to the NNA, Mays was held at a cave in the town of Ayn Dara in Shouf. He escaped to Dahr al-Baydar and from there he managed to return home.

The report added that security forces launched an investigation to determine the identity of the kidnappers and reasons for the abduction.