Men attack protest camp in central Beirut: Al Arabiya's correspondents

Men in black shirts attacked protesters in central Beirut on Tuesday, destroying their camp in the square as some people ran shouting for help from security forces. (File photo: Reuters)

Men in black shirts reported to be supporters of Hezbollah and Amal have attacked and burned tents in downtown Beirut, as Prime Minister Saad Hariri is set to deliver a speech in which he is rumoured to resign at 4:00 p.m. Beirut time (5:00 p.m. Dubai time) on Tuesday.

Al Arabiya's correspondents reported seeing groups of men reported to be Hezbollah and Amal supporters attacking and trashing tents which had been put up by protesters in downtown Beirut.

Lebanese security forces fired tear gas in central Beirut as the purported Hezbollah and Amal supporters attacked protesters, according to an Al Arabiya correspondent.

Photographs taken by Al Arabiya staff showed tents trampled under foot and broken.

Some protesters had been occupying areas of central Beirut, including Martyr's Square, with tents. Other tents were set up by civil society organizations and charities.

Protests in Lebanon began on October 17 and have since gripped the entire country. The attacks on tents in central Beirut come as Prime Minister Saad Hariri is expected to announce his resignation in response to the protests.

Hariri is a rival of the Shia political organizations Amal and Iranian-backed Hezbollah. However, Amal and Hezbollah have a stake in the current government, and their leaders have called on their followers to restrain from joining the protests.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:56 - GMT 06:56
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