Meqdad Military Wing Kidnaps Turkish National, 20 FSA Members, Speaks of 'Bank of Targets'إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Al-Meqdad family announced on Wednesday that its military wing has so far kidnapped more than 20 Free Syrian Army members in Lebanon, as well as a Turkish national, promising a “hefty catch.”
The military wing told LBCI television: “We may take escalatory measures depending on the latest developments.”
“We have a bank of targets in Lebanon and we are capable of reaching regional targets,” it warned.
“We can reach Aley, Tripoli, and Iqlim al-Kharroub,” said an unidentified masked gunman who was surrounded by a number of other gunmen of the Meqdad military wing.
Media report had earlier announced that the wing had abducted a Turkish national of the Soufan family.
Voice of Lebanon radio said that Turkish national is a diplomat called Soufan.
LBCI later broadcast images of the passport of the Turkish national who was kidnapped by the Meqdad family, identifying him as Aydin Tufan.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry demanded that the Lebanese government provide information on its abducted national, reported al-Jadeed television.
On the abduction of Syrian FSA members, Abu Ali al-Meqdad said on behalf of the family: “The family’s military wing kidnapped several Syrians. We are not afraid of anyone.”
He said the tribes of the eastern Bekaa valley such as Shamas, Zoaiter, Nasreddine and Dandash are all working together and will reveal their “big catch” on Thursday morning.
“There are over 20 FSA members kidnapped in Lebanon,” he pointed out.
Media reports said that over 30 members had been kidnapped.
Al-Mayadeen news channel later broadcasted a video of the kidnapped Syrians.
According to LBCI one of the abductees is a captain and another is an officer, who has been wounded.
He confirmed that the military wing kidnapped another member while the press conference was underway.
Al-Meqdad’s move comes in light of the FSA’s detention of Hassan Salim al-Meqdad in Damascus for allegedly belonging to Hizbullah.
The family’s statement also held Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey responsible for the kidnapping of Hassan.
Bassam al-Dada, the FSA political advisor, told al-Jadeed that the Syrian refuges, who are being kidnapped in Lebanon, are not members of the FSA.
He threatened to execute members of Hizbullah if the Syrians weren’t released.
Al-Jadeed television later reported that the family of Lebanese national Mohammed Mansour was informed of his abduction in Syria.
On Tuesday, Hizbullah denied a video aired by al-Arabiya news channel claiming that the Free Syrian Army detained a member of Hizbullah identified as Hassan Salim al-Meqdad.
The family of 39-year-old Hassan also ruled out that he is a member of the party, revealing that he works at Jammal Trust Bank and headed to Syria a year and a half ago to resolve some financial problems.
MP Ghazi Zoaiter, who was present at al-Meqdad family’s house to support it, urged the government to assume its responsibility.
He wondered if the kidnapping carried out by the FSA is part of the democracy it is calling for.
Hatem told LBCI that the family will kidnap factions other than the FSA if the man was not released within 24 hours.
Another member of al-Meqdad family vowed to abduct Turks, Saudis and Qataris also, but Abu Ali ruled out this possibility saying that our threats to these countries will remain political.
“We will only kidnap members of the FSA,” he added.
Security sources told LBCI that security measures near the Turkish, Qatari and Saudi embassies were boosted.
His other brother, Habib, threatened on Tuesday that the family will take escalatory measures if he wasn’t released within 24 hours.
“We will not wait for the government so that the fate of our son becomes the same as those 11 kidnapped men, therefore, we will not wait for the efforts exerted by Speaker Nabih Berri or (Hizbullah) Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah,” he said.
The 11 Lebanese Shiites pilgrims were kidnapped on May 22 by armed men in the Syrian province of Aleppo while on their way from Iran to Lebanon.
Four of the pilgrims were reportedly killed on Wednesday in an airstrike in the Aazaz region in Aleppo where they were being held.