Traffic that was halted for 35 days at the northern entrance of the southern city of Sidon resumed on Thursday after Salafist cleric Sheikh Ahmed al-Asir’s supporters removed their sit-in tents.
LBC TV said that some personal belongings were still being removed from the streets.
It quoted owners of shops in the area as saying that they financial suffered losses during the more than one month protest and wondered who would compensate.
Later Thursday, Popular Nasserite Movement leader Osama Saad claimed that along with Hizbullah and Amal movement he foiled the Salafist cleric’s attempt to create strife.
During a press conference he held in Sidon, Saad said: “Out of our awareness of the suspicious objectives of the sit-in we launched efforts with Hizbullah and Amal in ending it.”
The objective of Asir’s sit-in, which led to moral and material damages in Sidon, was to create strife and target the state and its institutions, he told reporters.
He stressed that the protest failed and reiterated accusations that ex-PM Saad Hariri’s al-Mustaqbal movement that is part of the March 14 opposition coalition supported the cleric.
“Some political parties led by al-Mustaqbal and March 14 provided the political cover for this phenomenon,” Saad said.
Al-Asir agreed on Wednesday to end his sit-in following a deal with Lebanese authorities brokered by Palestinian factions.
Media reports said the cleric ended his protest against Hizbullah’s arsenal after a pledge by the authorities on discussing the issue of arms at the national dialogue table, guaranteeing the safety of any peaceful protest al-Asir might organize in the future, taking security measures around the Bilal bin Rabah Mosque, settling the issue of Islamist detainees and vowing not to arrest any of his supporters arbitrarily.
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