60 Monday, November 4, 2019 07:15

Thousands gather on Beirut's streets for anti-government protest

Demonstrators gather at Martyrs Square during ongoing anti-government protests in Beirut [Andres Martinez Casares/Reuters] Tens of thousands of Lebanese protested on Sunday to keep up a nationwide street movement that has brought down the government, hours after a smaller rally of thousands was held to support the embattled president.

Unprecedented cross-sectarian demonstrations have gripped Lebanon since October 17, demanding a complete overhaul of a political system deemed inefficient and corrupt.On Sunday evening, thousands of protesters streamed into the main square carrying Lebanese flags and a flurry of inventive slogans on placards, an AFP correspondent said.

More:Thousands rally in show of support for Lebanon President AounLebanese President Aoun calls for non-sectarian systemLebanon deadlock remains after PM quitsRevolution, they cried to the rhythm of electronic beats in Martyrs Square.All of them means all of them, they chanted, calling for political leaders from all sectarian stripes to step down.

They also called for a general strike on Monday to pressure political leaders.The protest, the biggest since Tuesday when supporters of the powerful Hezbollah movement broke up the protest camp, followed a rally earlier in the day by supporters of Lebanons president, held to counter anti-government protests that have paralysed the country for more than two weeks.

 Thousands rally in show of support for Lebanon President Aoun (4:52)President Michel Aoun has been among the main targets of mass protests that aim to sweep from power Lebanons entire sectarian and political elite.Prime Minister Saad Hariri resigned last week, meeting a key demand of the protesters, but will stay on in the role of caretaker prime minister until a new government is formed.

 However, Hezbollah and its allies, who dominate the government, have held their ground without offering any concrete proposals to meet the protesters demands.Change is in hands of the peopleAbir Murad, 37, had come especially from the northern city of Tripoli to take part in Sundays protests.We are all united against the leaders … who havent changed anything in this country, she said.

We came to say that change is now in the hands of the people.Draped in white sheets, three demonstrators staged a mock execution of the grievances that pushed them down into the street. Nooses around their limp necks, they bore signs referring to corruption, sectarianism, and the 1975-90 civil war.
Demonstrators shout slogans at a feminist march during ongoing anti-government protests in Beirut [Andres Martinez Casares/Reuters]Protesters in the capital shouted in support of Shia-majority areas such as Tyre, the stronghold of the Hezbollah movement, which has urged its backers not to protest.

.Tyre, Tyre, Tyre. Were rising up for you, they chanted.Despite Hezbollahs warnings, protests were also staged in the southern city itself, the National News Agency reported.People also took to the street in Sunni-majority.....

News Code: 375826  |  aljazeera
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