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  1. #1
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    Lebanon's PM Saad Hariri resigning amid protests

    It appears that Lebanon is going to be the next victim of the Saudi-Iran proxy war. Lebanon's pluralist character has long been it's strength and has made for an enduring stability over the years. Is this now under threat?

    Mods - hope you don't mind the twitter links, they are all from verified accounts and link to the full news articles they refer to.














  2. #2
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    Saudia and Arab countries with low oil prices are mostly trying to divert the peoples attention from the economic problems that they are facing in the next few years


    Sent from my SM-G925I


    "Too often we... enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought"-JFK

  3. #3
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    Are things about to turn nasty in Lebanon?











  4. #4
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    Isnt Lebanon synonymous with civil war between different sects since the 70s
    Have they found out who assassinated the old leader yet


    "If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles"

  5. #5
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    They had a 15 year civil war, pluralist my behind.

  6. #6
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    Calls for revolution at Lebanon protests
    Thousands of people have taken to the streets of Lebanon for a third day of nationwide protests.

    They are calling on the government to step down over its handling of an economic crisis. Dozens of people are reported to have been injured since the unrest began.

    The prime minister is expected to speak on Monday, after he gave ministers a deadline to find a solution.


    Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-mi...banon-protests.


    LIONEL MESSI FAN
    Find PakPassion on Twitter: @PakPassion

  7. #7
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    I love Beirut. Hope they sort it out soon, so can go party again

  8. #8
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    Lebanon's coalition government has reportedly agreed to a package of economic reforms as it attempts to quell the biggest protests in years.

    Hundreds of thousands of demonstrators flooded the streets on Sunday for a fourth day of anti-government protests.

    The protests were triggered in part by a plan to tax calls on WhatsApp and other messaging services.

    The government quickly dropped the tax, but the protests have morphed into wider demands for reform.

    The Lebanese economy is struggling with low growth and high debt. Austerity measures have sparked anger and deteriorating infrastructure has made power cuts and piles of uncollected rubbish part of daily life.

    On Friday, Lebanon's Prime Minister, Saad Hariri, gave his coalition partners 72 hours to back economic reforms.

    Government sources cited on news agencies said an agreement was reached on Sunday.

    The agreement is said to include plans to privatise key utilities, reduce politicians' salaries and measures to address Lebanon's budget deficit.

    The reform package is expected to be approved at a cabinet meeting on Monday.

    Lebanon has long had a political system designed to balance power between the countries main religious groups.

    Observers say one of the striking features of the protests is how demonstrators have shaken off the country's sectarian divide to unite against their leaders.

    'I am disgusted'
    Mass protests erupted on Thursday, when the proposed tax on WhatsApp calls was announced.

    When the tax was scrapped, the demonstrations turned their focus to wider grievances with the government, which has been accused of widespread corruption and economic mismanagement.

    The spontaneous protests, which have hit major cities including the capital Beirut, have seen marchers chant for "revolution".

    With debt levels soaring, the Lebanese government has been trying to implement economic reforms to secure an $11bn (8.5bn) aid package from international donors.

    Without economic reforms, Lebanon's debt is forecast to balloon to more than 150% of GDP by the end of the year.

    The economic crisis, and the Lebanese government's handling of it, has ignited widespread anger, with many calling for political change.

    "I am here because I am disgusted by our politicians. Nothing works. This is not a state," Cherine Shawa told Reuters while protesting in Beirut on Sunday.

    Hanan Takkouche, also in the capital, said: "We're here to say to our leaders 'leave'."

    The protests have been largely peaceful, but dozens of people are reported to have been injured in clashes with police at demonstrations in recent days.
    Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-50118300.


    LIONEL MESSI FAN
    Find PakPassion on Twitter: @PakPassion

  9. #9
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    BEIRUT: Demonstrators across Lebanon blocked roads and took to the streets on Saturday for a 10th consecutive day, defying what they said were attempts by Hezbollah to defuse their movement and despite tensions with the army.

    The demonstrators — who have thronged Lebanese towns and cities since October 17 — are demanding the removal of the entire political class, accusing many across different parties of systematic corruption.

    Numbers have declined since October 20, when hundreds of thousands took over Beirut and other cities in the largest demonstrations in years, but could grow again over the weekend.

    The chief of the powerful movement Hezbollah on Friday called on his supporters to leave the streets, warning that any cabinet resignation would lead to “chaos and collapse” of the economy. His statement sowed divisions among Hezbollah supporters, some of whom were still protesting on Saturday.

    Hassan Koteiche, 27, from a Hezbollah stronghold in Beirut, said he agreed with most of Nasrallah’s “excellent” speech, but had some reservations.

    “This does not mean we are against his discourse but there is a divergence in opinion,” he said.

    “The main thing I disagree with is his belief that if the government or parliament falls then we would have no alternative,” he added.

    “That is not true. We have alternatives. We have noble and uncorrupt people,” who can govern.

    Main roads remained closed across the country on Saturday morning, as the army tried to reopen key routes.

    The General Security agency — one of Lebanon’s top three security bodies — said it has started to implement a plan to open key roads.

    An army spokesman said that security forces would negotiate with protesters, without resorting to violence.

    But troops clashed with residents of the Beddawi area near the northern port city of Tripoli as they were trying to close a main road, according to the state-run National News Agency.

    A medical source in the area said that at least four people were wounded by live fire and seven others in confrontations with the army.

    Soldiers fired rubber bullets in the air after being hit with fireworks and stones, according to the spokesman.

    Northeast of Beirut, dozens of demonstrators formed a human chain to prevent the army from removing a dirt berm blocking a seaside road.

    In central Beirut, they sat cross-legged on a key artery that connects the capital to its suburbs and surrounding regions.

    Demonstrators who had slept in tents near Martyrs Square, said they were still defiant. “We will stay on the streets,” said Rabih al-Zein, a 34-year-old from the Shia stronghold of Tyre in southern Lebanon.

    “The power of the people is stronger than the power of the parties,” he said.

    Lebanon’s largely sectarian political parties have been wrong-footed by the cross-communal nature of the mostly peaceful protests.

    Waving Lebanese flags rather than the partisan colours normally paraded at demonstrations, protesters have been demanding the resignation of all of Lebanon’s political leaders. “All of them means all,” has been a popular slogan.

    In attempts to calm the anger, Prime Minister Saad Hariri has pushed through a package of economic reforms, while President Michel Aoun suggested banking secrecy should be lifted from the accounts of high-ranking officials.

    Ministers and lawmakers affiliated with the president’s Free Patriotic Movement are set to lift banking secrecy from their own accounts next week, according to an FPM statement.
    Source: https://www.dawn.com/news/1513216/le...ying-hezbollah.


    LIONEL MESSI FAN
    Find PakPassion on Twitter: @PakPassion

  10. #10
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    Lebanon protests: People form a human chain
    Tens of thousands of Lebanese protesters joined hands in an attempt to form a human chain across the country from Tripoli in the north to Tyre in the south.

    Organisers have said the attempt to create a chain 170km (105 miles) long was successful.

    It marked the eleventh day of anti-government protests which began on 17 October.

    People have been demonstrating against the handling of a severe economic crisis, and there have been clashes with security forces.


    Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-mi...-a-human-chain.


    LIONEL MESSI FAN
    Find PakPassion on Twitter: @PakPassion

  11. #11
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    Lebanon's Prime Minister Saad Hariri has said he is resigning, amid protests that have gripped the country for two weeks.

    Mr Hariri said Lebanon had reached a deadlock and needed a shock to break the crisis.

    The protests began against now-scrapped plans to tax WhatsApp calls, but quickly widened to target political corruption and the economic turmoil.

    Lebanon has one of the highest debt levels in the world.

    Do today's global protests have anything in common?
    The protests have led to a 10-day closure of banks, with many other offices, schools and universities also shut.

    What did Mr Hariri say?
    In a televised address, the prime minister said he had reached a "dead end" and that he would tender his resignation and that of the government to President Michel Aoun.

    Mr Hariri said: "For 13 days, the Lebanese people have waited for a decision for a political solution that stops the deterioration. And I have tried, during this period, to find a way out, through which to listen to the voice of the people."

    But he added: "It has become necessary for us to make a great shock to fix the crisis.

    "Posts come and go, what matters is the safety and dignity of the people."

    President Aoun is still to comment. If the resignation is accepted, the constitution would require Mr Hariri to stay on until a new administration is established.

    What is the state of the protests?
    The prime minister's announcement came as the situation on the ground turned increasingly violent, reflecting the deep-seated schism in Lebanese society.

    The militant Shia group, Hezbollah, which has dominated the coalition government led by Mr Hariri, a Sunni, has recently hardened its stance against the protests.

    On Tuesday, black-clad men loyal to Hezbollah and another Shia group, Amal, destroyed a protest camp in central Beirut, chanting slogans, setting tents on fire and beating anti-government demonstrators. A roadblock set up by protesters was also attacked.

    Riot police and troops fired tear gas to separate the rival groups.

    The protesters remained defiant in central Beirut. Less than an hour after being attacked they erupted into applause at the announcement of Mr Hariri's resignation.

    "Saad Hariri is only the beginning," one told a local TV channel.

    How did we get to this point?
    The crisis began on 17 October when the government announced a new daily tax for calls made via voice-over-internet-protocol (Voip), which is used by apps including WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Apple's FaceTime.


    Media captionProtesters formed a human chain 170km (105 miles) long on Sunday
    The government backtracked within hours but the protests were soon under way and quickly burgeoned.

    As one demonstrator said: "We are not here over the WhatsApp, we are here over everything: over fuel, food, bread, over everything."

    Last week, Mr Hariri and his coalition, including Hezbollah, agreed to a plan of reforms to try to placate protesters, but their campaign continued.

    On Friday, Hezbollah's leader, Hassan Nasrallah, said "someone is trying to pull [Lebanon]... towards a civil war", suggesting the protests were funded by foreign powers and indicating a harsher policy towards the protesters.

    Hezbollah had argued against Mr Hariri's resignation, saying it could result in a void in Lebanese government.

    The BBC's Martin Patience says many in the population are tired of economic stagnation, endemic corruption and a lack of basic public services.

    He adds that the developments will alarm the West, which regards Lebanon as an island of relative stability in a turbulent Middle East.

    The power-sharing agreement that ended the country's civil war 30 years ago has kept the peace, but it has failed to halt the slide towards economic crisis.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-50225100


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  12. #12
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    This loser paid over $10mn to a South African Model for a sexual relationship. And then we ask about the state of Muslim countries.


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