Lebanese take to the streets to protest political stalemate

Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri speaks during a conference at Chatham House in central London on December 13, 2018. (File/AFP)
Updated 16 December 2018
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Lebanese take to the streets to protest political stalemate

  • Lebanon’s political factions are deeply divided over the war in neighboring Syria and other issues
  • Sunday’s protests in Beirut were organized by the Communist Party but drew others frustrated by the country’s deepening political and economic crisis

BEIRUT: Hundreds of Lebanese have taken to the streets to protest against a political stalemate that has prevented the formation of a new government seven months after elections.
Sunday’s protests in Beirut were organized by the Communist Party but drew others frustrated by the country’s deepening political and economic crisis.
Wearing red scarves and raising red flags, protesters complained about corruption, poor public services and spiraling public debt that is more than 150 percent of GDP.
One banner reads: “Off to the streets: enough talk. ” Protester Osama Assad said failure to form the government only “doubles the risks.” Hanna Gharib, of the Communist Party, said the protests would escalate.
Lebanon’s political factions are deeply divided over the war in neighboring Syria and other issues.


Car bomb explodes in Assad's Syria stronghold Latakia

Updated 9 min 49 sec ago
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Car bomb explodes in Assad's Syria stronghold Latakia

BEIRUT: A car bomb detonated in Syria's government-held city of Latakia on Tuesday, killing the driver and injuring several other people, Syrian state media reported.
Footage carried on the state-run Al-Ikhbariya news channel showed a large group of people milling around in a street while wreckage smouldered on the ground.
Though President Bashar Al-Assad has regained control over more than half of Syria, attackers have periodically continued to strike in cities he controls with suicide blasts and car bombs.
State news agency Sana reported that the driver of the vehicle, a Suzuki minivan, had been killed in the explosion, and that four other people had been wounded.
It reported that the authorities had dismantled another explosive device in the same location before the blast in the vehicle.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor reported that five people had been injured in the explosion.