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Wednesday, 22 May 2024
Around 18 wounded in clashes between protesters, Lebanese security forces
A view of a graffiti-covered concrete barrier erected by Lebanese security forces. (AFP)

Clashes erupted between protesters and Lebanese security forces when demonstrators attempted Tuesday morning to break through the cement barriers placed by the government around the Parliament.

Eighteen Lebanese people were hospitalized following the clashes, the Lebanese Red Cross said.

Security forces fired tear gas and water canons at the stone-throwing protesters, who were seeking to prevent MPs and government officials from reaching the parliament for a vote of confidence in the new cabinet of Prime Minister Hassan Diab.

The government erected concrete barriers in downtown Beirut to try and contain the protesters, which had previously taken over parts of the city center as their own.

During the clashes, the Lebanese army tweeted that riots and violations of public and private properties are damaging the protesters' demands.

Later, Lebanese parliament convened a session for MPs to hold a vote of confidence on the new government led by Prime Minister Hassan Diab.

MPs are set to vote on a government policy statement that says the country needs “painful steps” to rescue it from an unprecedented financial crisis, which sparked the early morning protests.

Demonstrators have been taking to the streets of Lebanon since October and are fueled by deep resentment for a ruling class seen as mired in corruption, which drove the economy into crisis.