BEIRUT — The archive room of the Lebanese National News Agency (NNA) was broken into and several computers, including a server containing photos, were stolen, announced caretaker Minister of Information Ziad Makari on Monday, condemning what he called a “crime against the nation".
In a statement, Makari said the thieves "stole the server on which photos of events since 1961 are stored, as well as five computers from the archive room."
"The employees were surprised this morning to find the door of the room forced open and the items were stolen," said Makari.
The minister said he "quickly contacted the judiciary, as well as the Director General of the Internal Security Forces (ISF), Imad Othman," and that an investigation has been opened.
He added that "all necessary efforts will be made to ensure that the truth is revealed and that the perpetrator of this act is punished," considering that "what happened is a crime against the nation.”
In a separate statement, Makari said that the stolen archive "is only a small part of the entire photographic archive" of the agency and that copies of the photos that were on the stolen server exist at the ministry.
The NNA offices are located at the Ministry of Information's headquarters in Beirut's Sanayeh neighborhood, adjacent to the Ministry of Interior.
Since the onset of the crisis in 2019, fewer civil servants have been commuting to work due to the increasing cost of transportation.
The Lebanese Lira lost over 95 percent of its value to the U.S. dollar since 2019 and the state struggles to provide basic public services.
The number of security staff in public institutions has also been reduced.