Release "must not be linked to Arad issue"
Daily Star 5/1/00
Samir Qantar, who served more than 20 years in Israeli prisons, asked Lebanese authorities on Tuesday to resist Israeli attempts to link the issue of Lebanese detainees with that of missing Israeli navigator, Ron Arad.
"The issue of Ron Arad angers Lebanese detainees because it makes their case more complicated. The Israelis become more strict and use us as hostages to get more information about his whereabouts," Qantar said in a letter he sent to the Follow-Up Committee for Lebanese Detainees In Israeli Prisons.
Qantar, the longest-serving Lebanese detainee, called on officials to insist Lebanon was not responsible for locating Arad. "On behalf of all detainees, I ask the Lebanese government to announce that Arad's case has nothing to do with ours."
Meanwhile, Israel has reportedly agreed to release 22 Lebanese detainees from Khiam prison. However, a date for the release was not announced.
Hizbullah's Secretary-General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah met Henri Fournier, the head of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Lebanon, to discuss the status of Lebanese detainees and Hizbullah's SLA prisoners.
There are more than 170 detainees in Khiam.
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