Families of Lebanese hostages to block major roads in protest

Published July 2nd, 2015 - 04:18 GMT

The families of Lebanese servicemen held hostage by Islamist militants will block major roads Thursday to protest the absence of any breakthroughs in negotiations, they announced Wednesday. 

The families said they will block Downtown Beirut’s Saifi road, and Martyrs’ Square near An-Nahar newspaper at 10 a.m. Thursday morning, the same time a Cabinet session is to be held, in order to attract the attention of ministers to their cause. 

At 9 a.m. the Sidon-Beirut highway near the Damour exit will also be blocked, they said. At least 25 hostages are being held by ISIS (Daesh) and Nusra Front militants. They were captured when militants briefly overran the northeastern town of Arsal last August. 

Since then the families have held several protests and blocked roads to pressure the government into expediting negotiations. The original number of captives was 37, but the Nusra Front has since released eight and shot dead two, while ISIS has beheaded two.

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