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On September 1, 1987, United States law enforcement officials lured Fawaz Yunis, a Lebanese resident-citizen suspected of conducting the 1985 hijacking of a Jordanian airliner, onto a yacht anchored in international waters in the Mediterranean Sea, where they arrested him. Attorney General Edwin Meese acknowledged that it was the first time a suspected terrorist had been arrested overseas by United States law enforcement officials. He insisted that these officials had legal authority to seize Yunis and transport him to the United States under a hostage-taking statute enacted by Congress in 1984.

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