Lebanon’s prime minister gives his government 72-hour deadline to act amid protests

 

In response to Lebanon’s protests in the past two days, Saad Hariri, the prime minister of Lebanon gave his government 72 hours to find a solution that would satisfy the protesters.

In a TV speech on Friday, Hariri said that Lebanon heavily suffers from the budget deficit.

He emphasized that the country is in “difficult and unprecedented” conditions and added that a group in the government are blocking his attempts at reforms, but he did not mention any names.

The Lebanese prime minister did not mention his government’s resignation, but after his speech, some political analysts predicted that Hariri will resign after 72 hours.

Hariri said: “We lowered the costs and tried to increase incomes by each time we faced some obstacles.”

He added that he understands the emotions of Lebanese protesters, but emphasized that there are some who want him to be the scapegoat of these protests.

The security forces have shot tear gas into the protesters.

Some countries, including Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, have warned their citizens against traveling to Lebanon for the time being.

Sami Nader, a TV commentator told Iran International: “We are facing different scenarios. All eyes are on the prime minister. Will he resign or not? I believe in order to at least calm the protesters, he must resign…But since Hezbollah holds the majority in the parliament, they have the most impact on the decision. Hezbollah controls the government’s executive decisions. Will they allow an independent government to form? A government formed by independent forces would be welcomed by the international community and this is the last hope. Lebanon needs money. The money must enter the country and it will not be without costs.”

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