‘Hunger worse than coronavirus’ protesters near Lebanon’s Central Bank say

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Dozens of protesters have broken coronavirus locdown orders to demonstrate in front of the Lebanese central bank in Beirut amid growing anger against the deteriorating economic situation in the country.

“We’ve come here to protest against the economic situation in the country where our currency means nothing these days. We realize we’re living in the time of a coronavirus pandemic, but hunger is way worse than coronavirus,” one activist told Al Arabiya English.


Several protests began at noon across the Lebanese capital over the economic and living conditions on Thursday, according to several Lebanese outlets.

Al Arabiya English correspondents in Beirut reported seeing a line of riot police standing between the protesters and the central bank but added no confrontation or clashes erupted between the two groups so far.

Protesters were heard chanting “we don’t care about corona, Riad Salameh is corona” during the protests outside the bank. Riad Salameh heads Beirut's central bank and has come under fire for his handling of the economic situation.

Crowds lined up in front of some money transfer offices earlier on Thursday in Lebanon, the last day before a decision takes effect that will require all transfers to be withdrawn in Lebanese lira, rather than in dollars, regardless of the currency sent.

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