Al-Nusra threatens to harm
kidnapped Lebanese soldier

BEIRUT - A Twitter account apparently connected to Syrian Al-Qaeda affiliate the Al-Nusra Front posted a message entitled “Who will pay the price?” on Tuesday, warning that the group would retaliate to violations against Syrians by harming a captive Lebanese soldier.


“Mohammed Maarouf Himya may be the first one to pay the price,” read the message, which contained images depicting abuses carried out against Syrian refugees in Lebanon.


The message went on to claim that “the Lebanese army is directed by the Iranian party [Hezbollah]” and said that the military institution was continuing “systematic operations to harass Syrian refugees in the [Lebanese] interior and on Arsal’s borders.”


It also claimed that delays in releasing Lebanese army and security personnel taken hostage in early August by the Al-Nusra Front were not the group’s fault.


“Everyone should know that negotiations were not cut off by us.”


“We do not have obstructive demands as they claim,” the message said in reference to remarks made by some Lebanese politicians.


“When we heard their statements today that the negotiations could go on for a month or two months we knew the road had been blocked by them.”


“Don’t blame us if we have had enough,” the statement concluded.


The Twitter account from which the message was posted (@Qalamon_J) was established on September 10, and has since posted 12 messages and videos.


The threat to harm Himya comes after two Lebanese soldiers were beheaded in recent weeks by supporters of jihadist group the Islamic State. Videos showing the execution of Ali al-Sayyed and Abbas Medlej first appeared online and were later confirmed as authentic.


Some 30 Lebanese army and security personnel are currently being held hostage at an unknown location after they were captured during 5 days of clashes with the Lebanese army in the eastern Beqaa town of Arsal in early August.


The fighting, which was sparked off by the arrest of a jihadist commander, was the most serious cross border incident Lebanon has seen since the beginning of the war in neighboring Syria.

Don’t blame us if we have had enough.