Jaafar Clan Kidnaps Syrian Opposition Members in Retaliation to their Abduction of Family Member

Members of the Free Syrian Army abducted overnight two Lebanese citizens and a Syrian national, reported Voice of Lebanon radio on Saturday.

Khodr Hussein Jaafar, Ahmed Medlij, and Syrian Abdullah al-Zein were kidnapped for their alleged role in persecuting Syrian opposition members in Syria, reported the daily al-Mustaqbal on Saturday.

The Jaafar clan retaliated by abducting some 50 members of the opposition in the Syrian border towns of Zeita and al-Burhaniyeh, it added.

They have been taken to the region of Beit Jaafar near the city of al-Qasr in al-Hermel in the Bekaa, it continued.

VDL said that the residents of Arab al-Mojadleh and Abou Jabal have since intervened to negotiate the release of the hostages.

The Free Syrian Army proposed the release of Jaafar in exchange for all the Syrians, but the clan refused, it revealed.

Al-Mustaqbal reported however that ten Syrian had been released.

The Syrian army has repeatedly infiltrated Lebanese territory in the North and Bekaa since the eruption of anti-regime protests in Syria in March 2011.

It has kidnapped Lebanese citizens for various undisclosed reasons and taken them to Syria before releasing them.

On Wednesday, Syrian troops crossed over into Lebanon, kidnapped Mohammed Mahmoud Ibrahim, and took him to Syria.

Last month, al-Jadeed TV cameraman Ali Shaaban was killed by gunfire from Syrian troops across the border in the northern Wadi Khaled area.

In January, Syrian forces kidnapped three Lebanese fishermen off the coast of the northern border town of al-Arida.

They killed one of them and returned the other two hours after they were abducted.

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