Opposition Strikes Lebanon! Clashes & Casualties Reported!
The situation in Lebanon has gone from bad to worse!
From Beirut to the Beltway describes the scene:
Future TV is reporting that Hizbullah is bussing people from outside Beirut to predominantly Sunni neighborhood, especially Tarik Jdeedeh. Clashes erupted between Sunni residents and “gunmen”.
Hizbullah is calling this an “intifada”. And indeed, their supporters are now stoning anti-Hizbullah residents of Beirut. March 14 MP Walid Eido says that Beirut is “being occupied by the Hizbullah militia…”.
On Monday The Daily Star reported that Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah was planning a “peaceful and democratic” strike across Lebanon on Tuesday.
So this is peace and democracy?
A Hezbollah supporter, uses a Lebanese flag to cover his face as he walks in front of burning tires, at the airport highway in Beirut, Lebanon. (AP)
When Hezbollah imposes a strike… It’s not optional!
From Beirut to the Beltway reports that bulldozers and trucks are transporting tires and dirt to block roads.
Thousands of Hezbollah militiamen and their supporters shut down the city of Beirut and paralyzed the country today in their forced strike on Lebanon:
Black smoke billowed over Beirut as demonstrators shut main roads, including those to the port and international airport. Organisers of Hezbollah, their faces covered in black masks, prowled on motorcycles, walkie-talkies clamped to their mouths.
“This government only understands force and today is only a small lesson,” protester Jamil Wahb told Reuters in the Shi’ite southern suburbs. “We will stay here until they give in.”
Six people were wounded, one of them critically, during a gunfight between opposition and pro-government crowds in the northern Christian village of Halba, security sources said.
Hezbollah had promised the protests would be peaceful…
Lebanese soldiers try to prevent protestors from the Hezbollah-led opposition from throwing stones in Beirut. (AFP)
Clashes break out throughout Lebanon as the pro-Syrian opposition paralysed the country.
Police said at least 25 people were wounded, some with bullets, in violent clashes between rival groups in Beirut and other areas, adding to concerns over the stability of a country still bearing the scars of the 1975-1990 civil war.
Lebanese troops and police were out in force on the streets for the one-day general strike which has been denounced by the government as a “coup attempt” by the Hezbollah-led opposition.
Naharnet describes a bloody confrontation where at least 48 people were injured including two of ex-MP Fares Soaid’s bodyguards who tried to cover him when his car came under fire in the northern village of Mistita, near the town of Byblos.
Opposition members throw sticks at a burning car as Lebanese army stand guard in Beirut, Lebanon Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2007. Opposition protesters paralyzed Lebanon Tuesday by burning tires and cars at major thoroughfares in the capital and its approaches to enforce a general strike that aims to topple the government. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Tawil)
Naharnet describes another incident where a woman, driving a dark blue Mercedes, was attacked by protestors who tried to smash her vehicle’s wind shield. The apparently determined lady sped-on hitting three of the protestors, who were evacuated later by an Amal ambulance.
Opposition and pro-government supporters clash throwing stones at each other while tires burn in the northern area of Tebbaneh in Tripoli, Lebanon Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2007. (Yahoo)
Radical Christian and Hezbollah supporter Michael Auon blamed attacks on the government supporters:
Police said seven people suffered gunshot wounds in disturbances between supporters of the guerrilla group and pro-government activists in central and northern Lebanon. Michel Aoun, a senior opposition leader, told Al-Arabiya television that the wounded were all members of the opposition.
Haaretz is reporting that 60 people were injured.
Smoke of burning tires and debris raises over Beirut city, Lebanon, Tuesday Jan. 23, 2007. Thousands of opposition protesters blocked roads with burning tires, debris and blazing cars around the Lebanese capital of Beirut and outlying regions of Lebanon on Tuesday, stranding motorists and workers in a bid to enforce a general strike aimed at toppling Prime Minister Fuad Saniora’s government. The strike was called by Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah and other opposition leaders. But Saniora and his pro-government supporters urged all Lebanese to ignore the call. (AP Ph
Michael Totten says that Palestinian guerillas are reportedly helping.
Pajamas Media is now reporting that at least one person was killed in clashes.
The Ouwet Front has amazing pictures from one of the “strike” points.