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Foreign Ministry Announcement


No. 247-E

Early this morning the seven Estonian citizens abducted in Lebanon were freed as a result of co-operation between Estonia, Lebanon, and other partners. The Estonians were freed on Lebanese territory and no force was used during the operation.

Foreign Minister Urmas Paet spoke this morning with Lebanese President Michel Sulayman and Prime Minister Najib Mikati as well as French Foreign Minister Alain Juppé.

Foreign Minister Paet said that Estonia would like to thank all of its partners. “We would like to thank the representatives of Lebanon, France, Germany, Turkey, and many other countries for their significant contributions and exceptional co-operation. We also sincerely thank the families and loved ones of the abductees, whose trust and understanding helped to resolve the situation,” he stated. “We also thank all the people of Estonia who made a contribution to help find and free the abducted citizens,” he added.

The foreign minister stated that the freed citizens are currently still at the French Embassy in Beirut. They are in fairly good health. At this time preparations are being made to bring them home as soon as possible. “Tonight a private plane will fly to Beirut, and our fellow countrymen should arrive home to their families and loved ones tomorrow before noon,” he confirmed.


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