Lebanese families to ‘beg’ Daesh to free captive soldier

Published August 12th, 2015 - 02:43 GMT

Relatives of the nine Lebanese servicemen being held by ISIS (Daesh) will head to the outskirts of the northeastern border town of Arsal over the weekend and will not return until they receive information on the fate of their loved ones, a spokesperson for the families said Wednesday.

"We are going there to beg them and do anything to ensure their safe release," Hussein Youssef, the father of captive Mohammad Youssef, told An-Nahar. "We have suffered enough."

He revealed that the families decided to "link their fate with that of their sons and put their lives on the line."

"We will head to Arsal on Saturday, throw ourselves before the abductors and will not return until we know something about their fate," Youssef said.

Nizam Mogheit, brother of ISIS hostage Ibrahim Mogheit, vowed in a statement that the families will never back down from their cause.

He criticized politicians for neglecting the year-long suffering of the families and engaging in a spat over state posts and positions.

"Who is following up the case of the abducted servicemen?" he asked in a statement carried by the state-run National News Agency.

He described the political rift among rival parties as a "political charade that deserves applause."

The Free Patriotic Movement is set to take to the streets Wednesday to protest the extension of the top military brass’ mandates and the government’s alleged marginalization of Christian rights.

Mogheit's statement made no reference to Youssef's announcement that they were traveling to Arsal's outskirts.

Officials over the past year have repeatedly said that negotiations to secure the release of the captives were on track, and on some occasions indicated that their release was imminent.

But so far, nothing has materialized, and the families complain that they are being kept in the dark over the case's progress.

Sixteen servivemen are being held by the Nusra Front on Arsal's outskirts in addition to the nine held by ISIS. The Nusra captives have been in frequent contact with their relatives, who have on several occasions been allowed to visit them.

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