A Lebanese man was arrested after posting a video online of him “joking” with a group of Syrian refugee children about which one he was going to behead first.
The video was posted on YouTube last week and has circulated all over the Internet. In the clip, three children, reported to be Syrian refugees, are seen cowering in terror as the man with the camera waves a knife at them and threatens to behead them. The man asks, “Whom do we behead first?” as the terrified children point at one another and cry out of fear for their lives.
The three children had reportedly been left in the man’s care by their mother while she went to buy groceries, and a security official says that it was all just a “sick joke.”
Now, the man has been arrested, and police are calling it an “isolated incident.”
“The intelligence branch of the Internal Security Forces has detained the man who made the video,” said the security official in a statement. “We call on everyone to make sure we maintain our awareness, but of course this video shows the depth of the impact of the Syrian crisis. People are affected by seeing images of beheadings, and some people will start to imitate them. Poor children; they were terrified.”
The mother of the three children was also briefly detained, according to reports, but it doesn’t appear that she had anything to do with the incident.
Lebanon is currently home to more than 1.1 million Syrian refugees amidst the ongoing conflict in the region.