Lebanon: Kidnapped tourists may be outside country

AP News
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Posted: Apr 05, 2011 1:38 PM
Lebanon: Kidnapped tourists may be outside country

Lebanon is investigating whether seven Estonian cyclists who were abducted last month have been taken out of the country.

Ziad Baroud, Lebanon's caretaker Interior Minister, said Tuesday there is no "exact information" on the March 23 kidnapping.

The tourists were cycling in the eastern Bekaa Valley when armed men wearing masks kidnapped them. There have been local reports that the kidnappers might have smuggled them outside the border.

Four people have been detained so far.

It was not clear whether the kidnappings were politically motivated, like the wave of abductions during Lebanon's civil war. Kidnappings are far less common now, and the area where the group was kidnapped is known for lawlessness, drug trafficking and clan feuds.