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Uber driver arrested after British diplomat found strangled in Lebanon

Related Story: British diplomat found strangled, dumped by road in Lebanon

A Lebanese Uber driver with a criminal record has confessed to the killing of a British woman who worked at the British Embassy in Beirut, a Lebanese security source said.

They said preliminary investigations into the murder of Rebecca Dykes showed the motive was purely criminal, not political, and the suspect had immediately confessed to the crime.

Dykes' body was found strangled by a main road outside Beirut on Saturday. She had worked at the British embassy for the Department for International Development, her LinkedIn page said.

Lebanon's NNA news agency reported the suspect had picked Dykes up in his car in Beirut's Gemmayzeh district on Friday evening, before assaulting and killing her.

Police traced his car through surveillance cameras on the highway, NNA reported.

The suspect, a Lebanese citizen, was detained at his apartment, the official said.

A spokesman for Uber said: "We are horrified by this senseless act of violence. Our hearts are with the victim and her family. We are working with authorities to assist their investigation in any way we can."

Ms Dykes, believed to be 30 years old, had worked at the British embassy for the Department for International Development.

British ambassador to Lebanon Hugo Shorter said: "The whole embassy is deeply shocked, saddened by this news."

In a statement issued by Britain's foreign ministry, Dykes' family said: "We are devastated by the loss of our beloved Rebecca. We are doing all we can to understand what happened."

Ms Dykes' friends said she was planning to fly home for Christmas on Saturday.

The murder has shaken Lebanon, where such crimes, particularly against foreigners, are relatively uncommon.

Reuters/AP

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