BEIRUT: Lebanese security forces fired teargas, rubber bullets and water cannons to disperse hundreds of protesters for a second straight day, ending what started as a peaceful rally in defiance of the toughest crackdown on anti-government demonstrations in two months.
The violence on Sunday comes on the eve of a meeting between the president and parliamentary blocs in which Saad Hariri, who resigned as prime minister on 29 October, is widely expected to be renamed to the post.
Hariri stood down during nationwide protests that have accused the entire political elite of corruption and mismanagement amid Lebanon’s worst economic downturn in decades. The protesters say they won’t accept Hariri as prime minister, demanding an independent head of government not affiliated with existing parties.
After weeks of bickering, the political parties failed to put forward independent names, most of them insisting on keeping their stake in government.