Lebanon: Two Out, 21 to Go

Two Out, 21 to Go

The cars skidded to a halt near Beirut's Summerland Hotel. Two men, dazed and disheveled, emerged. They turned out to be Jean-Louis Normandin, a French television technician who was kidnaped in March 1986, and Roger Auque, a journalist seized last January. Normandin had been held by the pro-Iran Revolutionary Justice Organization, but Auque's abductors may have belonged to another group.

Why the hostages were released remains a mystery, though France clearly had advance word, and may have negotiated with the terrorists through Syria. Two days before the men were freed, a French official quietly arrived in Beirut, where he was joined...

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