BEIRUT, May 22 (Xinhua) -- Syrian rebels abducted around 12 Lebanese Shiite pilgrims in the Syrian city of Aleppo on Tuesday, prompting their relatives to protest in Lebanon's capital Beirut.
The pilgrims were on their way back to Lebanon from a trip to religious sites in Iran, Al Jadeed TV channel reported. The report said the kidnapping took place in Syria's northern city of Aleppo, shortly after the buses carrying Lebanese pilgrims crossed Turkish- Syrian borders.
The rebel Free Syrian Army forced the men to leave the buses and took them to unknown destination, while allowing the women to go. The women then went to a Syrian police station, where they were assured that the authorities started negotiations with the kidnappers.
In protest of the abduction, family members of the kidnapped blocked roads in Beirut's southern suburbs of al-Kafaat, Bir al- Abed, Shatila and al-Msharrafiyeh on Tuesday.