0

Comments

Facebook

Twitter

Google

send


as-safir

Qahwaji: LAF hostages
must be released ‘at any cost’

Lebanese army chief General Jean Qahwaji. (AFP PHOTO / ANWAR AMRO)

BEIRUT - Lebanese Armed Forces chief General Jean Qahwaji said that soldiers held hostage by Islamist militants who fought the army in the Beqaa town of Arsal must be returned “at any cost,” and praised the army for saving Lebanon.

 

“The issue [of the LAF hostages] cannot be passed over or postponed,” Qahwaji told Lebanese daily As-Safir in an interview published on Monday.

 

“Our army saved Lebanon from deadly sectarian strife in the battle of Arsal; if it had been defeated the militants would have entered Akkar, then reached the sea and announced their state.”

 

Militants from several jihadist groups fighting in Syria attacked army and police posts near Arsal on August 2, after the arrest of a man accused of belonging to Al-Qaeda's Syrian branch, the Al-Nusra Front.

 

The Al-Nusra Front has demanded release of its members and the delivery of the bodies of fighters killed in the clashes in exchange for the LAF hostages.

Lebanese army chief General Jean Qahwaji. (AFP PHOTO / ANWAR AMRO)

Our army saved Lebanon from deadly sectarian strife in the battle of Arsal.