Heavy clashes broke out on Saturday between police and riot police in Beirut, Lebanon. According to Lebanon's local media, clashes broke out when protesters attempted to break barricades set up by the police. According to reports, the clashes resulted in at least 220 injuries. The protestors tried to get access to the roads leading to the Parliament's headquarters.
Local media reported that protestors threw stones and tree branches at the deployed security forces while the riot police used water cannons and tear gas on protesters. Protests have rocked Lebanon since October 17 last year. The protesters are demanding that Lebanon adopt a technocrat government of independent ministers that would finally be able to implement meaningful reform and fight against widespread and prevalent corruption.
FINAL UPDATE: 18 ambulances, 80 EMTs and 6 dispatchers from the LRC responded to the protests in downtown Beirut. Over 80 victims have been transported to nearby hospitals and over 140 injured were treated at the scene. LRC teams are still on standby and ready to respond. pic.twitter.com/p1OG7WFqwl— Lebanese Red Cross (@RedCrossLebanon) January 18, 2020
Lebanon's Interior Minister Raya El-Hassan tweeted about the incident and claimed that it was absolutely unacceptable for protesters to attack security forces in the manner that they did. She added that while she respects the right to protest she does not condone it evolving into a blatant attack on security forces.
Security forces also asked peaceful protesters to remain away from the sight of the confrontation, they also released several photos of injured policemen in the aftermath of the confrontation.
On Sunday, Lebanon's public prosecutor ordered the release of more than 30 people detained the previous evening, according to the National State Newsagency, in the worst day of violence since protests erupted three months ago. The public prosecutor said all 34 arrested are to be released, except those other pending cases.
(With Inputs from AP)