Two-thirds of some 80,000 books and manuscripts housed there were destroyed
January 4, 2014
A Lebanese soldier stands guard, on January 4, 2014 in north Lebanon’s city of Tripoli, outside a decades-old library owned by a Greek Orthodox priest that was torched after “a pamphlet was discovered inside one of the books that was insulting to Islam and the prophet Mohammad” said a source, who spoke to AFP on condition of anonymity.Image credit: AFP
Tripoli: A decades-old library owned by a Greek Orthodox priest in north Lebanon’s Sunni majority city of Tripoli was torched late on Friday, a day after a sectarian scuffle, a security source said.
“Unknown assailants torched the Saeh Library in Tripoli, destroying two thirds of some 80,000 books and manuscripts housed there,” said the source, who spoke to AFP on condition of anonymity.
Civil Defence teams were deployed to put out the fire, “but there are fears that more books were damaged by the water used to try and put out the flames,” he added.
The attack came a day after “a pamphlet was discovered inside one of the books at the library that was insulting to Islam and the Prophet Mohammad [PBUH],” said the source.
“After that, the library owner, Father Ebrahim Surouj, met with Islamic leaders in Tripoli. It became clear the priest had nothing to do with the pamphlet, and a demonstration that had been planned in protest over the incident was called off,” said the source.
“Then on Friday night, the library was torched,” he added.