Pictures: Protests Spread Across Lebanon over Proposed New Taxes

Breitbart | 10/18/2019 | Staff
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(AP) — Lebanese security forces fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of protesters in Beirut early Friday after they tried to push through security barriers around the government headquarters amid some of the largest demonstrations the country has seen in years.

The protests erupted over the government’s plan to impose new taxes during a severe economic crisis, with people taking their anger out on politicians they accuse of corruption and decades of mismanagement.

Protests - Dozen - People - Beirut - Imposition

The protests started with a few dozen people gathering in central Beirut over the imposition of a 20-cent daily fee on messaging applications, including WhatsApp.

They quickly escalated into some of the biggest demonstrations since an uprising over a garbage crisis in 2015, with thousands of people taking part.

People - Government - Headquarters - Parliament - Building

People gathered near the government headquarters and parliament building where riot police were deployed, chanting: “Revolution!” and “Thieves!” — the latter a reference to widespread corruption in a country that has one of the highest debt loads in the world.

Some protesters threw stones, shoes and water bottles at security forces and scuffled with police. Security forces said at least 40 of its members were injured in the clashes. Protesters were also injured.

Police - Restraint - Stones - Hours - Volleys

Police showed restraint as they were pelted with stones for several hours, firing volleys of tear gas only after protesters broke through the first security barrier near the government house. Police chased protesters through the streets of Beirut’s commercial district through the night.

The protests could plunge Lebanon into a political crisis with unpredictable repercussions for the economy which has been in steady decline. Some of the protesters said they would stay in the streets until the government resigns.

Government - Lebanese - Citizens - Collapse - Interior

“The government is trying to help Lebanese citizens avoid a collapse,” Interior Minister Raya al-Hassan, who ruled out the possibility of a Cabinet resignation, told the Lebanon-based Al-Mayadeen TV. “If another government is formed...
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