Statement by Deputy Press Secretary Speakes on the Release of David Dodge in Beirut, Lebanon

July 21, 1983

The President was informed this morning that David Dodge, who was kidnaped last July 19 from the campus of the American University of Beirut, where he was serving as acting president, has been released. The Government of the United States is grateful to Syrian President Hafiz al-Assad and to Dr. Rifaat al-Assad for the humanitarian efforts they undertook which led to Mr. Dodge's release.

The President is deeply gratified by Mr. Dodge's release and has directed that a U.S. military aircraft be put at Mr. Dodge's disposal for his return to the United States.

The President also expressed his appreciation for the excellent work of the State Department in assisting in Mr. Dodge's release.