Fate of Pilgrims Unknown as Alleged Opposition Battalion Claim Abduction

Posted on: May 29, 2012 at 15:50
The fate of the 11 abducted Lebanese pilgrims remains unknown as officials confirm that efforts are still ongoing to release the men and that they are in good condition.

“Contacts are ongoing with all sides to determine (the fate of the pilgrims) and we ensure their families that they are fine and safe,” Prime Minister Najib Miqati told As Safir on Tuesday.

However, he noted that there’s no substantial evidence about the whereabouts of the men.

For his part, Speaker Nabih Berri voiced hope that the upcoming 48 hours would hold a clear view regarding the case.

“We are exerting efforts to release the kidnapped men,” he said in comments published in As Safir.

Sources close to former Prime Minister Saad Hariri told An Nahar that the Turkish authorities are trying to resolve the case.

“Hariri only cares about the arrival of the kidnapped men to Lebanon, he has no other ambitions in this regard,” they said.

Meanwhile, the pan-Arab daily Asharq al-Awsat reported that Ammar Dadikhi brigade is responsible for the abduction of the pilgrims in Reef Aleppo.

Sources said that this brigade is an extremist, anti-Syrian President Bashar Assad group but it isn’t linked to the Free Syrian Army.

The pilgrims, who were snatched in northern Syria on May 22, were reported as having arrived in Turkey on Friday.

However, conflicting reports emerged about the whereabouts of the abducted men as they were expected to arrive in Lebanon on Friday but an unclear problem occurred and halted their release.
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