A suspect has been arrested. Authorities say the Lebanese man has confessed to the crimes.
Friends said Rebecca Dykes, 30, was preparing to head home for Christmas on Saturday. She’s been in Beirut as the program and policy manager for the Department for International Development since January 2017. After leaving a bad with friends Friday night, Dykes was abducted, raped, and murdered.
Hugo Shorter, the British ambassador to Lebanon, Tweeted: “The whole embassy is deeply shocked, saddened by this news. My thoughts are with Becky’s family, friends and colleagues for their tragic loss.”
The whole embassy is deeply shocked, saddened by this news. My thoughts are with Becky’s family, friends and colleagues for their tragic loss. We're providing consular support to her family & working very closely with Lebanese authorities who are conducting police investigation.
— Hugo Shorter (@HugoShorter) December 17, 2017
Police do not believe the attack was politically motivated. She was sexually assaulted, strangled with a rope, and dumped on the side of a highway east of Beirut.
She had been out in the Gemmayzeh area of central Beirut for the leaving party of a colleague at the British embassy and had left just after midnight.
She was abducted some time after and killed. Her body was found dumped on the Metn highway several miles away.
Police sources told the Telegraph the first autopsy revealed the cause of death as strangulation, however a second postmortem examination is to be carried out later.
A spokeswoman for the Foreign Office confirmed Ms Dykes’ death and said they were providing support to the family.
She said: “Following the death of a British woman in Beirut, we are providing support to the family. We remain in close contact with local authorities. Our thoughts are with the family at this difficult time.”
She had worked for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office since 2010, previously on Libya and Iraq. She is thought to have grown up in Hong Kong, but attended Malvern St James Girls boarding school in Worcestershire before later studying anthropology at Manchester University and International Security and Global Governance from Birkbeck, University of London.
In a statement her family said: “We are devastated by the loss of our beloved Rebecca. We are doing all we can to understand what happened.”
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