Hundreds of people were wounded in Beirut on Tuesday in collisions between security forces and demonstrators who refused the new government as it sought to gain a parliamentary vote of confidence.
According to Reuters,Smoke wafted through Beirut where riot police fired tear gas at protesters seeking to block MPs from reaching the heavily barricaded parliament. The Lebanese Red Cross said it attended 373 people for injuries, taking 45 of them to hospital.
One of the world’s most heavily indebted states, Lebanon is facing an unprecedented financial crisis rooted in decades of state waste and corruption which have fueled public anger.
Eggs and paint were hurled at the cars of MPs and ministers arriving near parliament, but the session went ahead despite the scuffles. At the start, Berri said an MP had received stitches after being hit in the face and head by stones.
At Tuesday’s session, Prime Minister Hassan Diab, whose government took office last month, read out its policy statement which urges some “painful steps” to address the crisis. It calls for moves including cutting interest rates and seeking foreign help.