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Muslim Youths Join Protest of Kidnapings in Lebanon

January 28, 1987|Associated Press

BEIRUT — A pro-Iranian Shia leader said today that kidnaping is a proper weapon in "the causes of Islam," but Muslim students marched to protest abductions of foreigners, including four of their teachers.

The anti-kidnaping march by hundreds of young Lebanese accompanied a one-day strike by about 50,000 students protesting the abduction of four professors--three Americans and an Indian--from the Beirut University College campus last Saturday.

Muslim schools in West Beirut joined those with American, British and French affiliations in the strike, the second since gunmen disguised as police abducted the four educators.

Demonstrators carried a coffin wrapped in a black sheet and chanted: "Stop kidnaping! We need education!"

A banner was emblazoned with sketches of the four, their names and the message: "Don't Give Up. We're With You." It was signed "Your students."

Hussein Moussawi, leader of the pro-Iranian militia Islamic Amal, said: "I support acts of kidnaping against spies and (intelligence) agents."

He declared support for "acts of kidnaping carried out to exert pressure aimed at defending the causes of Islam, including the abduction of the two (West) Germans to obtain the release of a Muslim arrested in Germany, which wants to hand him over to America."

Moussawi's remarks were broadcast by the Voice of the Oppressed radio station run by the pro-Iranian Hezbollah, or Party of God. His Islamic Amal organization is separate from Amal, Lebanon's main Shia militia.

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