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A gunman took hostages in a bank in Beirut: "Give me back the money" - Voila! news

2022-08-11T20:09:06.264Z

A 42-year-old customer, who was not allowed to withdraw thousands of dollars for medical treatment for his family due to the restrictions on the banks, pulled out a shotgun and threatened to set himself on fire. After hours of negotiations, all the hostages were released and he was guaranteed access to his account. Residents who arrived at the scene protested: "Enough with the banks' rule"



A gunman took hostages in a bank in Beirut: "Give me back the money"

A 42-year-old customer, who was not allowed to withdraw thousands of dollars for medical treatment for his family due to the restrictions on the banks, pulled out a shotgun and threatened to set himself on fire.

After hours of negotiations, all the hostages were released and he was guaranteed access to his account. Residents who arrived at the scene protested: "Enough with the banks' rule"

Guy Ulster

11/08/2022

Thursday, August 11, 2022, 7:12 p.m

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On video: a gunman barricades himself with hostages in a bank in Beirut (Walla system!)

An armed man barricaded himself today (Thursday) for hours with bank hostages in Beirut until he got partial access to part of his account.

Bassem al-Sheikh Hussein, 42 years old, entered with a hunting rifle and a gas tank, and threatened to set himself on fire if he could not withdraw funds from his account, which includes approximately $200,000, to pay for medical treatment for his father and his family.

After about six hours of negotiations, he left the bank accompanied by the security forces and released the six hostages.

There were no casualties in the incident, during which several shots were fired.



Due to the economic collapse in the country, banks have imposed strict restrictions on withdrawing foreign currency, and many Lebanese are struggling to make ends meet.

"He demanded access to about $200,000 that he has in his bank account. When the employee refused his request, he started screaming that his family members were in the hospital and then he pulled out the rifle," said a security source.


"Make them give me back the money," the kidnapper was heard shouting at security personnel outside the bank.



In the end, he got part of the amount.

His sister and the head of the local bank association said that the bank, a branch of the Federal Bank of Lebanon, agreed to give him access to about $30,000.

At this stage it is not clear if he will be prosecuted for holding the hostages there.

Some customers managed to escape before he closed the doors and at least one elderly person was released due to his age.

Five employees and one customer remained in the bank, who left unharmed.



"I'm in my office. He (the kidnapper) got angry, calmed down, and then got angry again," said the branch manager, Hassan Halwai, in a telephone conversation with Reuters at the time of the incident.

The Lebanese Red Cross said it sent an ambulance to the scene, and during the hostage-taking protesters gathered outside the bank.

Many of them shouted: "Enough with the rule of the banks".

An armed man barricades himself with hostages in a bank in Beirut, Lebanon August 11, 2022 (Photo: Reuters)

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Source: walla

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