25-06-2022 11:48 AM Jerusalem Timing

Beirut Turkish Centers Shut after Pilots Kidnapped

Beirut Turkish Centers Shut after Pilots Kidnapped

Turkey has closed its cultural centers and commercial office in Beirut after the kidnap of two Turkish Airlines pilots, Ankara’s ambassador to Lebanon told AFP on Monday.

Turkey has closed its cultural centers and commercial office in Beirut after the kidnap of two Turkish Airlines pilots, Ankara's ambassador to Lebanon told AFP on Monday.

Turkish pilots kidnapped in LebanonThe two pilots were kidnapped on Friday by a group demanding the release of nine Lebanese pilgrims kidnapped in Syria in May 2012, but were reportedly moved to Turkey, a major backer of the kidnapers.

“As a safety measure, the Turkish cultural centre and commercial office in Beirut have suspended their activities," ambassador Inan Ozyildiz said.

He also said "Turkish Airlines' offices have been operating from Beirut International Airport" instead of at their downtown Beirut facility.

After the kidnapping on Friday, Turkey's foreign ministry urged citizens to avoid travel to Lebanon and to leave the country if they were already there.