In Lebanon, anti-system protest finds a second wind

The demonstrators multiply the actions in places symbolic of the mismanagement, negligence and corruption they denounce for four weeks.

Time to Reading 4 min.

In Zaytouna Bay, Beirut, on November 10, protesters organize a collective breakfast on the pier, a thing traditionally forbidden in this pre-square of high society Beirut. ANDRES MARTINEZ CASARES / REUTERS

Following the evolution of the Lebanese protest movement now requires the gift of ubiquity. The anti-system sling, which is approaching its fourth week, is no longer expressed only in large demonstrations, organized on a handful of emblematic sites, such as the Martyrs' Square in Beirut and the Al-Nour Square in Tripoli.

For a week now, it has been embodied in a multitude of actions, less spectacular but more targeted, aimed at places scattered throughout the territory, symbolic of the mismanagement, negligence and corruption denounced by women. protesters. While settling in the long term, the movement renews and widens its modes of intervention, in the hope of hastening the formation of a government of technocrats, following the resignation, two weeks ago, of the cabinet led by Saad Hariri.

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"The tactic of maximum tension, with blocking of roads and demonstrations every night, became untenable, decrypts Carla Eddé, vice-president of Saint Joseph University and a regular participant in protest activities. We put a part of the population back and we exhausted ourselves. The organization into small decentralized movements, which take turns over each other, has allowed the movement to find a second wind. "

A women's march

The course of the day of Sunday, November 10 gives a good overview of this change. The mobilization began with the intrusion of a few hundred people in Zaytouna Bay, a marina lined with high-end restaurants and luxury yachts, characteristic of the semi-privatization of downtown Beirut.

Equipped with fruit juice, mana'ich – the Lebanese pizza – and salads, the mutineers organized a collective breakfast on the pier, something traditionally forbidden in this meadow of high society Beirut. A way of denouncing the grabbing of the coast by private interests.

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In Akkar, the northern tip of Lebanon, a historically neglected region, protesters have moved into Kleyate airport, closed since its bombing by the Israeli army, in 2006, during the conflict with Hezbollah, the Lebanese Shiite movement. In Tripoli, the big city in the north, hundreds of students marched through the streets, while other groups held sit-ins in front of the homes of local politicians, demanding their resignation.


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