Lebanese Army Frees Abducted Saudi Citizen, Arrests Suspects

A general view of Beirut, Lebanon. (AFP/Getty Images)
A general view of Beirut, Lebanon. (AFP/Getty Images)
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Lebanese Army Frees Abducted Saudi Citizen, Arrests Suspects

A general view of Beirut, Lebanon. (AFP/Getty Images)
A general view of Beirut, Lebanon. (AFP/Getty Images)

The Lebanese army freed on Tuesday a Saudi citizen who was abducted over the weekend.

In a tweet, the military said an intelligence directorate patrol freed Mashari al-Mutairi during a “sophisticated operation on the Lebanese-Syrian border.” It also arrested the kidnappers.

Army commander Joseph Aoun confirmed the release of the captive and the arrest of the perpetrators.

Caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati stressed that Lebanon is keen on preventing any threat against Arab nationals.

Lebanon will not be used to threaten the security of Arab countries, he stressed.

Mutairi, who works for Saudi Arabian Airlines (Saudia), was abducted overnight on Saturday with the kidnappers demanding a ransom of $400,000.

Conflicting reports had emerged over where he was kidnapped from.

Initial reports said the man was kidnapped on the airport road in Beirut, while Lebanese security sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that he was abducted in a central district of the capital.

Saudi state-run Al Ekhbariya television said he was nabbed after he left a restaurant in the waterfront Zaituna Bay area.



Saudi Arabia Expresses Concern over Military Escalation in Yemen after Israeli Airstrikes

The flag of Saudi Arabia (Asharq Al-Awsat)
The flag of Saudi Arabia (Asharq Al-Awsat)
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Saudi Arabia Expresses Concern over Military Escalation in Yemen after Israeli Airstrikes

The flag of Saudi Arabia (Asharq Al-Awsat)
The flag of Saudi Arabia (Asharq Al-Awsat)

Saudi Arabia expressed its deep concern on Sunday over the latest military escalation in Yemen after the Israeli attacks in the Houthi-controlled Yemeni port of Hodeidah.
The statement stressed that these developments "exacerbate the current tension in the region”.
In a statement on X platform, the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs said: “The Ministry is following with great concern the military escalation in Yemen following the Israeli attacks that targeted Hodeidah province on Saturday, July 20, 2024,” emphasizing that “these developments aggravate the current tension in the region and undermine ongoing efforts to end the war in Gaza”.
The ministry also called on all parties to exercise maximum restraint and to distance the region and its people from the dangers of war. It also called on the international community and active influential parties to fulfill their responsibilities to end conflicts in the region.
Moreover, the ministry affirmed the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's continued efforts to end the war on Gaza and affirmed its continuous support for peace efforts in Yemen to spare its people more suffering and achieve security and peace in the region.
On Sunday, Brigadier General Turki Al-Maliki, the spokesman for the Saudi Ministry of Defense, affirmed that Saudi Arabia has no relation to or participation in the targeting of the Yemeni city of Hodeidah. 
He emphasized in a statement posted on the ministry's X platform account that Saudi Arabia will not allow its airspace to be violated from any direction.