Two foreign reporters were kidnapped by Hezbollah while reporting on the fuel crisis in Lebanon on Monday.
Matthew Kynaston, a British reporter for NOW, and Stella Männer, a German freelance reporter, were approached by men identifying themselves as Hezbollah at a gas station on Airport Road in Dahiye, a Hezbollah stronghold.
Kynaston identified himself as press and showed his press card, however they demanded his passport and contact information, according to messages sent to the editor at NOW.
In a voice note sent to his colleague, you can hear a man saying “I have the right to take his phone. I have the right to take his phone without his consent.” The voice note was sent at 2:39 pm and was the last they heard from him.
The UK’s Chargé d’Affaires in Lebanon said on Twitter that he had been in contact with Lebanese authorities and that Kynaston is “in their care.”
“Journalists must not be prevented from carrying out their legitimate tasks,” explains Longden.
According to Corrina Cerruti, journalist at German Taggesspiegel who relayed information about Stella, she is “fine but not free.”
A Hezbollah spokesperson told National News correspondent, Aya Iskandarani, that the two journalists did not have permission from Hezbollah to report from Dahiye.
They were transferred over to the General Security after being detained and questioned by Hezbollah.
Both Männer and Kynaston have been released.