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Body of soldier killed in 1982 found in Lebanon

Body of soldier killed in 1982 found in Lebanon

The body of what appears to be a Syrian soldier killed in a 1982 battle with Israel was found in eastern Lebanon, an army official said Wednesday, and a search is under way for the remains of more missing soldiers.
A man digging foundations for a house on a plot of land near the village of Mdoukha in eastern Lebanon unearthed the remains Monday night, the senior Lebanese officer said. The body was in a military uniform and helmet, and had a Syrian military identity card his pocket, the official said.
Mdoukha and the nearby village of Sultan Yacoub in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley were the site of heavy fighting in June 1982 between Israeli forces and Syrian troops and their Palestinian guerrilla allies shortly after Israel's invasion of Lebanon.
On Wednesday, the Lebanese army had cordoned the area off and was searching for more remains, the officer said, speaking on condition of anonymity in line with military regulations. He said officials have already unearthed what appears to be a second set of remains nearby.
Lebanon will contact the Syrian military to determine how many soldiers are suspected missing from fighting in the area and possibly conduct DNA tests, the officer said.
Israel says that on June 11, 1982, five of its soldiers went missing in a battles near Sultan Yacoub. Several years later, two of the missing soldiers were returned alive to Israel in prisoner exchanges with Syria and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine General Command, according to Israel's Minister of Foreign Affairs. The fate of the remaining three is still unknown.
Last year, experts discovered the remains of a British hostage in the nearby village of Aita al-Foukhar. Alec Collett was 63 when he was kidnapped in southern Beirut on March 25, 1985 while on assignment for the U.N. Relief and Works Agency.
Lebanon experienced intense fighting during its 1975-1990 civil war, and the remains those killed are occasionally found.


Updated : 2021-10-17 08:39 GMT+08:00