Protests sweep Lebanon as fury at ruling elite grows
Tens of thousands of angry Lebanese took to the streets on Friday, blocking roads and burning tyres in a second day of nationwide protest to demand the removal of a political elite they accuse of looting the economy to the point of collapse, Trend reports citing Reuters.
Addressing protesters, Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri blamed his rivals in government for obstructing reforms that could have resolved the economic crisis and gave them a 72-hour deadline to stop blocking him, otherwise hinting he may resign.
He said Lebanon was going through an “unprecedented, difficult time”.
Lebanon’s biggest protests in a decade recall the 2011 Arab revolts that toppled four presidents. Lebanese from all sects and walks of life have come out on to the streets, waving banners and chanting slogans urging Hariri’s government to go.
“There are those who placed obstacles in front of me since the government was formed, and in the face of all the efforts that I have proposed for reform,” Hariri said, without naming names.
“Whatever the solution, we no longer have time and I am personally giving myself only a little time. Either our partners in government and in the nation give a frank response to the solution, or I will have another say.
“The deadline left is very short, it’s 72 hours,” he said.