QA: 9, 26 May 2012, Statement of the Spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkey in Response to a Question

As is known, Turkey attaches great importance to peace and stability in friendly and brotherly Lebanon and maintains close relationship with all segments of the people of Lebanon regardless of ethnic or religious differences.

In this vein, we believe that it is of utmost importance to defuse the tension which Lebanon has been undergoing for the last couple of days and which targets the stability of this country. We have indeed expressed, at meetings with our counterparts at every level, our readiness to make all our possible contribution to this purpose.

Lastly, we commend the efforts and prudent approach displayed by all relevant parties in Lebanon in order to prevent that the case of the kidnapping in Syria of eleven Lebanese citizens escalates into a stability problem.Further to the requests of Lebanese officials, President H.E. Mr. Suleiman and Prime Minister H.E. Mr. Miqati, we are also trying to contribute to this process to the extent possible.

In this direction, necessary consultations have been held with Lebanese officials concerning the information made available indirectly to the Lebanese authorities as well as to our side that the 11 kidnapped Lebanese citizens are in good health, that they will be released and that they are expected to enter Turkey. However, the aforementioned Lebanese citizens have not entered our country until this moment. It is our genuine wish that our Lebanese brothers who have been kidnapped would join their families safe and sound as soon as possible. We will continue to exert every possible effort to this end.