World, Middle East

Lebanon: Security forces, protesters clash in capital

12 reportedly injured, 40 affected by tear gas amid demonstrations outside parliament as lawmakers discuss 2020 budget bill

Wasem saif al-din   | 27.01.2020
Lebanon: Security forces, protesters clash in capital

BEIRUT

Lebanon's security forces on Monday detained scores of demonstrators in front of the country's parliament amid tensions before lawmakers began discussing the 2020 budget.

Security forces closed all roads and entrances leading to the parliament in the capital Beirut, where the draft general budget law, proposed by the previous government, will be discussed and approved, according to Anadolu Agency's reporter.

Demonstrators managed to remove barbed wire after skirmishes with security forces at the northern entrance of parliament, trying to prevent legislators from participating in the budget session.

Last week, protests erupted in Lebanon against the new government of premier Hassan Diab formed earlier this month.

The Lebanese Red Cross announced on Twitter that 12 people had been injured during the clashes and referred to hospitals, while 40 others were affected by tear gas.

At least 114 people were injured last Monday in Beirut and 220 others wounded on Saturday after security forces and protesters clashed outside the parliament building.

Lebanon suffers from high unemployment, slow growth and one of the highest debt ratios in the world, with the debt burden reaching $86.2 billion in the first quarter of 2019, according to the country's Finance Ministry.

*Bassel Ibrahim contributed to this report from Ankara

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