New clashes broke out Sunday night in central Beirut between police and a group of protesters, the second day of a protest movement, following the deadly explosion in the port of the Lebanese capital. Two ministers have already announced their resignation from the government.
Anger continues to rage in Lebanon. Demonstrators clashed on Sunday, August 9, with Lebanese security forces blocking access to an artery leading to the House on the second day of a protest movement following the explosion that killed nearly 160 people in Beirut on Tuesday.
Like the day before, thousands of protesters converted in Parliament Square, located not far from Martyrs’ Square. “We want the whole government to disappear,” said Yousseff Dour, a protester.
Pictures released by the Lebanese media show that an entrance to the parliament was set on fire. Several protesters also managed to enter the ministries of housing and transport.
On Saturday, the headquarters of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Energy and Economy were stormed while the premises of the Association of Lebanese Banks were ransacked.
Two resignations from the government
The consequences of this challenge are already being felt: two Lebanese ministers have already announced that they are leaving the government. Damianos Kattar, Lebanon’s Minister for the Environment and Administrative Development, announced his resignation on Sunday night, “in the face of the enormous catastrophe (…) and (…) a sterile regime that has missed many opportunities,” he said in a statement.
Earlier in the day, Information Minister Manal Abdel Samad also announced his resignation, which she explained by the government’s inability to implement reforms and by the disaster that occurred on Tuesday in Beirut port.
According to the daily L’Orient-Le Jour, which passes on press information, other ministers could follow the movement and it is not excluded that the government will resign a blockade on Monday at the end of the Council of Ministers.
On Sunday, the patriarch of the Maronite Christian Church in Lebanon, Bechara Boutros al-Rai, called on the Lebanese government to resign if it proves incapable of reforming its governance.
At the same time, international aid is organized. Emergency aid collected on Sunday during a video conference and coordinated by France and the UN to help Lebanon amounts to 257.2 million euros, according to This sum will be paid out quickly to meet the immediate needs of the Lebanese people. Of this amount, EUR 30 million will be provided by France.
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With AFP and Reuters