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27 Dec 2019 | 07:43 AM UTC

Lebanon: Protest scheduled in Beirut December 27 /update 62

Demonstration expected in front of PM’s house in Beirut on December 27; heightened security presence and localized transportation disruption expected

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transportation
LBN

Event

A protest has been called in Beirut on Friday, December 27. Participants reportedly intend to gather at 16:00 (local time) in the Tallet el-Khayat district of Beirut, specifically outside the house of Prime Minister Hassane Diab to denounce his appointment.

Related anti-government protests are possible across the country throughout the day and potentially into the weekend.

A heightened security presence and transportation disruption is expected near the demonstration site. Clashes between demonstrators and security forces cannot be ruled out. 

Context

On October 16-17, the government approved tax hikes on tobacco products and a daily tax on messages and calls done via the WhatsApp mobile phone messenger application. The announcement sparked mass protests across the country on October 17, forcing the government to revoke the tax proposal. Since, protests have evolved, calling for the resignation of the government and have continued despite an emergency reform package announced by Prime Minister Saad Hariri on October 21. On October 29, Prime Minister Saad Hariri announced his resignation. On December 19, President Michel Aoun designated former education minister Hassan Diab to serve as the next prime minister.

Advice

Individuals in Beirut, and in Lebanon more generally, are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all protests and demonstrations, anticipate transportation and business disruptions near demonstration sites, and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities.