The ‘Wall of Shame’, Lebanon’s Parliament Building Barriers, Is Finally Coming Down

Rim Mouawad

On Monday, the media office of the Speaker of the Parliament, Nabih Berri, issued a directive to lift and ease the security measures implemented around the Parliament building since the Lebanese Revolution took off in 2019.

According to Al-Jadeed, the barriers will be lifted before the next parliamentary session.

Back in December 2019, the authorities erected what people have come to call The Wall of Shame, a meter-long construction described as an “extra security measure.”

It sparked wide outrage on social media platforms as the Lebanese people slammed the idea of putting a barrier between them and the “house” that is meant to represent them, stripping them of their freedom to demand reforms through demonstrations.

The people went on to use The Wall of Shame to express their demands and/or hardships, notably Lebanese artists turning it into their largest piece of art, and graduates turning it into their wall of degrees in a statement against unemployment.

Now, the infamous Wall of Shame is finally coming down.

On Monday morning, the newly-elected MP Elias Jarade also called for the lifting of such measures.

He tweeted that the parliament is “the house of the people, there are no walls that rise between the representatives of the nation and the citizens. Before calling the deputies to any session, all barriers that prevent people from entering Nejmeh Square must be removed.”

This first parliamentary session holds great importance as the MPs will gather to vote for a new Speaker of the Parliament and a new Deputy Speaker of the Parliament.

Berri ordering the removal of that wall brings to question whether he does not expect to be reelected as the head of the parliament, or whether the reelected ruling parties now feel “safer” with the opposition from the civil society, including elected revolutionaries, among them in the parliament.

Related: Here’s What Is Expected For The Election Of A New Deputy Speaker Of Parliament In Lebanon.

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