Hundreds injured in Beirut clashes as new Lebanon govt seeks vote of confidence
Hundreds were injured in Beirut on Tuesday in clashes between security forces and protesters who rejected the new government as it sought to win a parliamentary vote of confidence.
Riot police fired tear gas at protesters seeking to block MPs from reaching the heavily barricaded parliament, Reuters reports. The Lebanese Red Cross said it treated 373 people for injuries, taking 45 of them to hospital.
Lebanon is facing an unprecedented financial crisis rooted in decades of state waste and corruption which have fuelled public anger. Parliament speaker Nabih Berri was quoted as saying that Lebanon should seek IMF technical help to draw up an emergency plan though it could not surrender itself to the IMF because the nation could not bear its conditions.
At Tuesday’s session, PM Hassan Diab, whose government took office last month, read out its policy statement which calls for moves that include cutting interest rates and seeking foreign help.