Issue 385 - 15 May 1990
The release of a second US hostage in Beirut at the end of April was welcome news and evidence that the mass kidnapping drama may indeed be gradually nearing its end. As Gulf States Newsletter has argued in the past, the hostage takers seem to have realised that they have gained virtually nothing from holding their prisoners and it will profit them little to hold onto them interminably. Indeed, the chief quid pro quo for liberating them – which appears to be the release of some 300 Lebanese Shia and Palestinian prisoners held by Israel – is more likely to be achieved 85 a result of freeing the hostages than by hanging onto them.

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