Over a week after the massive deadly explosion that ruined Beirut as we know it, the Lebanese Parliament met for the first time to extend the State of Emergency, which was imposed immediately after the Beirut explosion, for two more weeks.
This means that supreme authority over Beirut’s security has been granted to the Lebanese army.
The military now has command of all security and legal matters in the city and has the right to take action against anything and anyone who is seen or deemed a security threat.
In other words, if the military wants to, it can/will thwart the efforts of the revolution. That would be the people currently in the streets demanding justice and calling to bring down Lebanon’s corrupt leaders.
The army has the given right to clamp down on all gatherings aka major protests. It could impose a curfew and put people under house arrest for no reason. The army will even be allowed to enter people’s homes at any given time, granted they have a warrant.
The army could even detain and deport people who are suspected to be posing a threat to the city’s security. If the army arrests protesters, they will get trialed in the military court, aka expediently and without legal representation.
Even news reporters must be wary because, in the State of Emergency, the army could even censor the media.
Last week, police used tear gas against protesters in Martyrs’ Square who called to take down the government. They even used different types of bullets, severely harming many protesters.
Although, according to a press conference held by doctors in Beirut on Thursday, the severely injured protesters were shot with bullets that aren’t normally used by ISF.
The doctor stated there could have been insurgents dressed as police who used live ammunition against protesters. If it is so easy for people to get away with this, how can people trust security forces and the army?
Notably, this decision to extend the State of Emergency in Beirut has been taken days before the verdict of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon on the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafic Hariri.
A good question to ask now is why the Parliament decided this now when they ignored calls for it at the height of the pandemic, which posed a higher threat to the city and country.
What could be more threatening to the security of Beirut? Unarmed citizens, who want justice for the lives lost and property destroyed in the explosion?