Rear View – Lebanon in review (8 August 2021)
5 August: Lebanese Army seizes weapons from Beirut protestors
The Lebanese Army seized multiple weapons and ammunition from people heading to Beirut to participate in the 4th of August protests.
Photographs released by the military’s Directorate of Orientation are show dozens of assault rifles, ammunition, and hand grenades, as well as combat gear including armor, gloves, a helmet, and a vest with the Amal Movement logo.
5 August: Mikati: Slow progress towards a new government
As president Michel Aoun and Najib Mikati held talks on forming a new government on Thursday, slow progress was made. “President Aoun and I achieved progress towards forming a government, even if this progress was slow,” the prime minister said following his fifth meeting with the president since he was appointed.
“Today’s meeting was a positive step forward.” he then confirmed.
Mikati said he was conscious of Western countries’ withholding of crucial aid to the state until a government could be formed.
“This is where I started my meeting with his Excellency the President and I told him the government must be formed.”
The Lebanese people struggle daily while the politicians still fail to form a government.
7 August: Wildfires engulf Bisri Valley
At around midnight on Saturday 7th August, a large fire broke out in the Bisri Valley in Lebanon’s south and quickly spread to other areas.
Citizens in Chouf and towns surrounding the Bisri Valley woke up to a large fire that had already spread to areas beyond the Civil Defense forces’ reach.
In Mount Lebanon’s Chouf district, the fire quickly spread to the village of Bater that is known for its agricultural lands, eradicating vast areas of pine trees, a symbol of that area.
This is the second fire that’s broken out in the Bisri Valley since public pressure forced the construction of a dam on the Bisri River to halt. It raises concerns that the fires are intentional.
Lebanon’s north has also been experiencing several outbreaks of wildfires amidst extreme heatwaves and no government fire management plan.
8 August: Nasrallah claims Beirut port explosives smuggled to Syrian rebels
On the 15th anniversary of the 2006 Lebanese-Israeli July War, Hassan Nasralla – the Secretary-General of Hezbollah – claimed the ammonium nitrate that was stored in Beirut’s port prior to its explosion was to be used to smuggle arms to armed rebels in Arsal and Qalamoun in Syria.
According to him, those who imported the ammonium nitrate in Lebanon supported armed Syrian rebels, alluding to Saad Hariri’s Future Movement, which is openly opposed to Al-Assad’s regime.
A few minutes later, the Secretary-General of Hezbollah attacked Beirut Explosion investigator, Judge Tarek Bitar. He claimed the whole investigation was a political one and urged Judge Bitar to release the results of the technical investigation “quickly..
8 August: Food poisoning rates in Lebanon skyrocketing
Food poisoning cases in Lebanon are on the rise at an alarming rate. The number of cases is increasing daily and has surpassed last years significantly.
People are reporting food poisoning all over the country every day after eating in or ordering food in a restaurant.
Patients who are unsure how to handle their symptoms of food poisoning have been bombarding hospitals with calls. They often end up in the emergency room in critical condition.
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