People took to the streets on Saturday to protest against paying bills for services the government hasn’t been providing for years. The protest that started with a large march and promulgated the statement “We Won’t Pay” reached central Beirut where it immediately turned into a confrontation between protesters and the security forces.
The confrontation intensified, leading the ISF to call on the peaceful protesters to leave the area immediately so they can deal with what has been now assumed as “infiltrators” aiming for violence and riot.
The ISF tweeted a video of their call via a megaphone where they are heard saying, “We ask the peaceful protesters to leave the area immediately.” Protesters moved then towards the Serail and the security forces prompted attempts to separate them.
The incident incited controversial reactions on social media. Some criticized the father for exposing his child to that dangerous aggression and others went to his defense for being a ‘desperate hero’ of a kind. The fact is that both father and son were in that peaceful demonstration in which families and people of all ages participated.
كلكن حكمتو على هيدا الانسان انو ما بيصلح يكون أب وعرض حياة ابنو للخطر… بس ما حدا منكن فكر قديش وصلت معو هيدا الانسان لبطل فرقاني معو يخسر شي حتى روح روحوا اللي هوي ابنو! اي نعم شوفوا لأي مرحلة وصلونا حكامنا بهيدا البلد. لهيدي الدرجة وصلت كمية القرف والذل والتعتير.#لبنان_ينتفضpic.twitter.com/Byow5MzzVM
The ISF arrested several protesters and posted on Twitter items that they seized from them, which include gloves, gas masks, and helmets. They referred to the arrested protesters as being troublemakers or rioters.