World Bulletin/News Desk
Lebanese Interior Minister Marwan Charbel on Saturday said "they will protect Turkish people in Lebanon" in the wake of the abduction of Turkish pilots in Lebanon.
After a meeting with Turkey’s ambassador to Lebanon Inan Ozyildiz, Charbel said "We will protect the Turkish people in Lebanon."
The Turkish Foreign Ministry has urged Turkish citizens to avoid travel to Lebanon and advised those already in the country to leave if they can.
"Lebanon condemns all kinds of kidnapping operations and the Lebanese government has been making every effort to release the Turkish pilots," said Charbel.
Charbel added, "We will do what we need to do for the Turkish abductees after we locate them".
On Friday, a shuttle carrying a Turkish pilot, his assistant pilot, and the crew of the Turkish Airlines plane which flew to Beirut from Istanbul was stopped by four gunmen on the way from airport to the hotel, and gunmen abducted pilot Murat Akpinar and his assistant Murat Agca.
In a response to a question on whether Turkey plans to withdraw some of its troops deployed in a UN mission in Lebanon after the incident, Charbel said he thought Turkey would not withdraw its troops under the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL). He added that Turkish forces have taken on important tasks in the south of Lebanon and the Lebanese people in the region had good relations with Turkish forces.
UNIFIL has been deployed in Lebanon since the end of the Israeli invasion in 1978.Last Mod: 10 Ağustos 2013, 17:18