Lebanon marks two years since the start of its popular uprising

Asia's Tech News Daily

© FRANCE 24 screengrab.

Lebanon on Sunday marks the two-year anniversary of its popular uprising when demonstrators took to the streets against government corruption and austerity measures in the biggest protest movement the country has seen in years. 

The protests began in Beirut over the government’s plan to tax WhatsApp calls amid a sharply deteriorating economic crisis. But the demonstrations quickly spread to the rest of the country, swelling into the biggest protest movement the country has seen in years.

Security forces on October 17, 2019 fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of protesters trying to push through security barriers around the government headquarters.

For the first time in the history of the country, Lebanese people of all faiths joined together, against their leaders, calling for a change of regime.

The movement continued to grow, and in June 2020, it was further fuelled by the collapse of the economy.

Two months later, on August 4, 2020, the capital was rocked by a devastating explosion that killed an estimated 217 people, injuring more than 6,500 and destroying much of the city.

Two years after the popular uprising began, the country continues to grapple with medicine, food and fuel shortages, and nationwide power cuts.

On October 14, the deadliest sectarian clashes in years broke out on the streets of Beirut, killing seven and leaving dozens wounded. 

Click on the video above to watch FRANCE 24’s report on the history of the protest movement.

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