Palestinian issue at root of violence, says ex-Lebanon hostage

Need to understand complex history and relationships
Benjamin Weir, a former Presbyterian missionary who was held hostage for more than a year in Beirut two decades ago and has maintained friends in Lebanon ever since, says failure to reach a comprehensive peace agreement in the Middle East is at the root of the violence that recently tore that nation apart.

“Hopes for peace are not on the horizon, because the Arab-Israeli issue has not been addressed forthrightly,” Weir told the Presbyterian News Service in an interview.

Weir and his wife, Carol, served as Presbyterian missionaries in Lebanon for nearly 30 years, but he was kidnapped in Beirut May 8, 1984, by the Islamic Jihad group. He was released 16 months later.


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