More Protests Threaten Cabinet as Trash Crisis Deepens

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A movement that has been organizing protests in downtown Beirut against endemic corruption said on Wednesday that it was ready to hold more demonstrations to give back the people their rights, deepening a crisis that started over piles of uncollected garbage in the streets of the capital and Mount Lebanon.

“We wanted to send a message through our demonstration that we are ready to sacrifice ourselves to gain our rights,” said the “We Want Accountability” movement at a press conference it held in Riad al-Solh Square a day after several protesters were injured in a scuffle with police.

“The regime fears the people who are calling for their rights. That's why it is assaulting them,” it said.

“Our battle is not with police but with the regime,” said the movement, which called for the release of all protesters arrested on Tuesday.

“We can't guarantee that the people's anger won't turn into some kind of rioting,” it told reporters as it called for another protest at Riad al-Solh square at 6:00 pm Wednesday.

“We Want Accountability” also urged the cabinet to resign and vowed to file a lawsuit against all security forces members who assaulted the protesters.

One of the movement's lawyers said 60 percent of those arrested during Tuesday's protest have been released but four remain missing.

The Internal Security Forces said in a communique that it arrested 48 people who took part in Tuesday's riots, but kept 18 of them in custody for further questioning.

Following their press conference, “We Want Accountability” activists held a sit-in near al-Helou barracks in Beirut to call for the release of the demonstrators.

Their protests are inspired by the grassroots youth movement calling itself "You Stink,” which mobilized thousands of people in two rallies over the weekend, and has called for another large protest on Saturday.

"You Stink” began as an online group which accuses politicians of wanting to get the bigger cut from waste management contracts.

The trash crisis erupted when the Naameh landfill south of Beirut was closed on July 17 and when garbage began piling up on the streets of Beirut and Mount Lebanon.

On Tuesday, the cabinet unanimously rejected the winning bidders to manage trash collection, citing high costs and a bidding procedure some said was questionable.

Prime Minister Tammam Salam suggested dumping the garbage in the remote, impoverished region of Akkar, which has been neglected for decades, in exchange for $100 million in development projects as an incentive.

But such a proposal angered the residents of the region who held a protest on Tuesday night shouting "Akkar is not a garbage dump!”

Calls by some politicians, including Environment Minister Mohammed al-Mashnouq, to reopen the Naameh landfill pending a settlement on the bidders also prompted the residents of the town and nearby areas to issue a statement.

They warned the authorities that they would set on fire any truck transporting waste to the landfill.

The statement also asked Salam to issue a decree that states the permanent closure of the landfill.

G.K.

M.T.

Comments 47
Default-user-icon flamethrower (Guest) 26 August 2015, 12:49

thanks for abu saab and the FPM for saving akkar

Default-user-icon Darwr101 (Guest) 26 August 2015, 13:24

What regime are they talking about?

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 14:11

Dawr, the one made up of both m8 and M14. Do you honestly believe that these two sides are enemies? fact is they want the people to believe so, but behind the corridors, they agree to share on everything, that's why people call the the Mafia.

Default-user-icon boo1 (Guest) 26 August 2015, 13:26

bla

Thumb cedars2 26 August 2015, 13:35

Yes I think that's the best solution. Let the army take over and oversee parliamentary elections with the assistance of clean decent civil organizations.

Missing mohammad_ca 26 August 2015, 13:37

Who gave you or the army that authority. Also, what electoral law will be used?

Thumb justin 26 August 2015, 13:44

exactly, as if the army would be any different when it comes to ruling the country.

Missing mohammad_ca 26 August 2015, 15:58

Many objections. What guarantees that the army won't split? An the history of military rule in the region is terrible to say the least.

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 13:40

PB, I need to be very honest with you here, I am at the demos almost every day, there are over 100 people volunteering to help keep the place safe from thugs, I can assure you in all fairness, that there is not One Single FPM member or even Awmi member there to cause trouble, just like everyone else, there are people from all parties quite naturally, but 99% of the participants are there hoping to get real changes. The ones that sent the trouble makers are Nabih Berri and Walid Jumblatt. I can also assure that right as we speak now, even Hezbollah has not joined in the vandalism acts. It has its members there protesting peacefully just like the rest of us, but NO acts of sabotage from them. I will report to you guys should the matter change, but the two mainstream trouble makers are members of Amal and the PSP of Walid Jumblatt, evidence is here to prove it.

Thumb eagledawn 26 August 2015, 13:53

phoenix: Are you for bringing down the government and the regime? Wouldn't that play into aoun and hezb of iran's hands?
These demonstrators are not offering solutions. You don't change the regime in a country like Lebanon with 17 sects through demonstrations. That is a precursor to civil war. That's my opinion and would like to hear yours.....

Missing imagine_1979 26 August 2015, 14:46

Eagle "houmoumet tassrif a3mel" is not the end of the world nor will it take us to the appocalips..
So yes down with this gov, houkomet tasrif a3mel, a new president, new gov but preferably technocrates, then new electoral law then new parlement.. What is qrong with that??? Isn't it not better than the mess we r living in??
Don't we deserve better??

Default-user-icon william Petro (Guest) 26 August 2015, 15:07

gr8 job of reporting the truth!
let me add this " follow the money"

Thumb marcus 26 August 2015, 17:23

I would have supported it had there been a president in place. But under the circumstances and in the absence of a president the demonstrators' call for regime change only favors hezbollah and aoun.

Thumb -phoenix1 27 August 2015, 00:24

(1). PB, thanks for the good advice, I've just come home again, what a tiring day. Trust me, all the points you've raised have been noted and by God's will, there will be no war. About the protests in solidarity in Europe, I know Paris, London, NY, Montreal will have it on Saturday, may I suggest that you open the social media to the organizers to get a better idea. Tonight, the demos went peacefully. Unfortunately, about those Goons that have been trying to hamper the peaceful demos, it is now confirmed by the authorities that they come from Khada2 El Ghamee2, and some other surrounding areas adjacent to Downtown, sadly these are under the control of both Hezbollah and Amal. However there nothing so far to confirm any official HA involvement or even Amal or the PSP, they're all denying it.

Thumb justin 26 August 2015, 13:40

1 min ago Security source to LBCI: Rioters have sprayed yesterday the security forces in the Banks street with gasoline in order to set them on fire which compelled the forces to defend themselves.

the fingerprints of hezbollah!

Thumb barrymore 26 August 2015, 13:48

they should be shot on the spot. I don't know why the security forces are treating them with respect?!

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 14:17

Justin, I am not in defense of Hezbollah, trust me, if I wasn't there on the ground with the people, I could have shared your suspicion. The fact so far as at today, the only people causing the sabotage are people sent by Nabih Berri and Walid Jumblatt. Right up to this point, nothing on the ground seems to indicate any suspicion or any hard evidence on any Hezbollah act of sabotage or vandalism. The press has also infiltrated the ranks of the goons and got confirmation of who sent them. I need not defend Hezbollah if it was implicated, the moment it is, I will raise the banner.

Missing coolmec 26 August 2015, 14:58

Phoenix 1
I am in Beirut now and I am going tomorrow to Riad El Solh square tomorrow . I would like to meet you if possible

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 13:41

Lebjack, I have been trumpeting this for months now, either the army is siding politically, or it simply doesn't have the balls or the strength to do so.

Thumb barrymore 26 August 2015, 13:48

welcome back phoenix! We missed you;)
The army is a reflection of the lebanese factions and all their contradictions but more disciplined. It would disintegrate at the first call from nassrallah.

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 14:13

Barry, thanks bro, you're right, the army has that kind of problem, but these days, Sayed Hassan needs the army a lot more than the army needs him, some political pundits will go as far as tell us that Sayed Hassan will go the extra mile to keep the army glued.

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 13:45

The Lebanese Army must act now to keep the thugs away from the demos which clearly are peaceful. But the infiltration of thugs by Amal and the PSP of Jumblatt is a repetitive thing aimed at derailing the whole issue and discourage people from participating. The army needs to cordon off the area and have checkpoints at all the entry points to check on people coming to the demos. The army should have agents to move around the protesters to spot early on would be trouble makers. It doesn't even take a trained eye to detect trouble makers, they have evil in their faces and their looks are early indicators of whom they are. The protests will grow and snowball, the more people are hurt, the more momentum this revolt will pick up. The army must act now, or else it will belong to the losing side, Qhawaji has his job well cut out for him, either he shows up or history will soon write him off as another has-been.

Thumb -phoenix1 27 August 2015, 14:07

(1). Shiakiller, calm down, no need to get so irritated, I am there on the ground, possibly you're not. You want to make it look simple whereas I am not. On the ground, we too have people talking to all sides, maybe casually, or thru other methods. Some Druze have told us that the PSP tried stopping them from joining the demos, even the army intelligence in the Shouf tried, but these folks despite it all left and joined. However a good number said that they saw the PSP bring in vans and loading it with people, so it goes one notch further to solidify our suspicions.

Thumb -phoenix1 27 August 2015, 14:08

(2). Shiakiller. Now about Hezbollah, I am not defending it in any way, it's just when you wrote, I wasn't with any tangible proofs to confirm and will not confirm just to please your likes either, but then when as evidence mounts, so will my contribution to confirm or unconfirm. Now you do represent a certain alias which personally I don't like, you may hate, I don't, despite all our problems in Lebanon, I will not join the bandwagon of hatred between the Lebanese. I have also noticed that my casting suspicions on Walid Jumblat has kind of sparked your ire almost uncontrollably, just by curiosity, where you posting before under a well-known alias? You raised my suspicion too on this one.

Thumb -phoenix1 27 August 2015, 14:08

** You need NOT...***

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 14:11

Eagle, I understand your concern, but trust me, the "You Stink Campaign" is very firm to clean the whole slate, they are very aware that the parties will try best as they could to politicize their movement, but the best thing is to topple the entire rot. They are young, yes, but they're learning fast, so what they're proposing is for the cabinet to go, then parliament, then elections, then the new parliament elects a new president and a new PM, at the moment I am a bit in a hurry as I have to catch up, but reforms are high on the agenda. Guys come and join us, we cannot stay at home and be reticent, every age group is there, every sect is there, every party member is there, this is our best chance to get the rotten politicians out. No revolution can be done without pain, no pain, no gain, no Lebanon.

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 14:21

PB, the ISF have nabbed more than a dozen of these thugs, the mobilletes belong to AMAL and the goons come from Walid Jumblatt and Nabih Berri. Furthermore, I need to confirm that now all major capitals will hold Rally of Solidarity this coming Saturday with the Youth Movement of Lebanon, or also known as the You Stink Campaign. Stay tuned, something big is now happening in Lebanon, it is not like the Cedar revolution when we got Syria to leave peacefully, this is to retake possession of our revolution from those who stole it away from us, meaning, M8 and M14. Join us this Saturday and Sunday at Riad El Solh, it's time for change.

Thumb eagledawn 26 August 2015, 14:26

I am sure you have very good intentions and hope you are right. I also believe that Salam is not holding on to his chair for personal or selfish reasons. His resignation is something he talked about several times. What we need to think about are the transition mechanisms to allow us to elect a new parliament or a new president and the constitutional umbrella for said mechanisms. I am afraid this demonstration does not have the constitutional cover or authority to deal with that.

Keep us update and be careful...

Missing imagine_1979 26 August 2015, 14:49

There is one in paris pgboy, trocadero place, sorry no news from belgium till now, but will keep u posted

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 14:25

** To make Millions and Millions....***

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 14:26

Lebjack, the You Stink Campaign comes right on time, just take a look at the fiasco of the Trash Collection deal, the M8 and M14 sides were happily making another suspicious and highly dubious deal when they got caught red handed, to the point where Saint Nabih Berri wanted us to believe that he found it unfair and called for its cancellation. Initially he and Jumblatt were cut out to make over a Millions in accumulated interests on the deal, till they were exposed. M8 and M14 had solved nothing in 10 years, nothing, it's just getting worse and worse, the trash issue is the drop that made the glass overflow. M8 and M14 must now be swept away, for good, enough of them 2.

Thumb -phoenix1 26 August 2015, 14:31

OK friends, I must leave you now, I will be at Riad El Solh till late. Please stroll by, come and see the great atmosphere. Sure, the Berri/Jumblat goons will come to try and spoil things, but they can't. Yalla, gotta go now, cheerio.

Default-user-icon 555 (Guest) 26 August 2015, 15:46

"the road to hell is paved with good intentions"
The protests have been hijacked by the thugs - they control it now, the original organizers just have not realized it yet.

Thumb -phoenix1 27 August 2015, 00:35

Hi Shia, no when I said I was leaving, I meant leaving my office in Beirut to join our people in the square. Shia, I am not one to say one thing and do another, I am inside Lebanon and I will remain inside Lebanon, in fact my office isn't that far from DT Beirut, so my friend, no assumption from me, just plain truth at all times. Cheers.

Default-user-icon JCWilliams (Guest) 26 August 2015, 15:35

Pheonix1 seems to be telling truth. Berri and Jumblatt. Sounds about right. Even after a new election they will both still be in the mix as will Hariri and Aoun Nasrallah Bassil GaeGae etc. There's the problem, they will not go away voluntarily. They and their parties are the ones benefitting most from the status quo and they will resist the most and try to subvert the process of reform and if they cannot they will push for Civil War lite and do not forget the USA interests , the UN , the EU and Israel and Saudi Arabia who also favor the status quo. Dream.

Default-user-icon pierre (Guest) 26 August 2015, 15:44

Phoenix,
How do unknown its Amal/PSP and not Hizbollah or anyone else?
Are they wearing something that you can identify who they are?
Just curious.

Thumb -phoenix1 27 August 2015, 14:16

Pierre, I'll reply to you in good faith. In real life, there are always advance indicators as to why things happens when they happen. Jumblat upon seeing the amplitude of the demos, made another one of his famous U-turns to denounce the very nature of the demos. On the ground as I explained to our friend Shiakiller, aka Bannimaarouf, our people there spoke to many participants. The ones coming form the Shouf areas told us how the PSP warned them about joining the demos, thus underlining Jumblatt's position of an hour before. Then the Army intelligence in the Shouf warned them not to go, then they saw several vans being loaded by the PSP. About Berri, many people were chanting slogans praising Berri, maybe you need to ask yourself what the symbol 303 represents. In any case, the army and ISF have dished out communiques about the Mountassin and the areas from which they came from, please check their official websites to confirm further. CCTV coverage will soon be released too.

Thumb beiruti 26 August 2015, 15:57

@phoenix 1. Be careful my friend. It is far too easy and has become the norm that when the young people get tired of the old and run them out of office, their movement gets high jacked and taken over by forces that are hiding in the bushes and waiting for you to do the hard work of "removing the rot", then they simply replace it with new rot.
It is not the regime that is rotten, it is the political class that runs it. They are only a symptom of the disease that is Lebanese politics.

Thumb -phoenix1 27 August 2015, 00:35

Bless you Beiruti, will do my best.

Thumb beiruti 26 August 2015, 15:59

These are the same people who were with the Assad Regime before February 14, 2005. They moved effortlessly into and took over the Cedar Revolution. A time of great hope that was crushed by the political maneuverings of Michel Aoun and Walid Jumblatt.
Until we rid ourselves of these family dynasties, it will not matter what regime we toss out or bring in, these guys will find their chairs, sit and start stealing again and passing the largesse down to their family members.
If you're going to do this, do it right and finish in control.

Missing imagine_1979 26 August 2015, 16:22

Beyrouti, all the political class should learn, the vast majority is corrupt and the rest is accomplice (at best by inaction)...
So yesthe movement might not be structured, it might look like a mess but people are fed up, and even of this movment wont bring us a perfect system, maybe even not a descent one but at list it can do a small change..
So be there, the more people like u, the less it can taken away by crappy polticians...

Thumb lubnani.masi7i 26 August 2015, 16:25

totally agree
they have no road map; no plan but an evolving one; changing priorities perhaps good intentions. Naive to think they can change the regime all the while hezbollah is armed to the teeth.

Missing imagine_1979 26 August 2015, 16:39

Hezbollah is armed that's true but cannot take over all tge country, he can take beyrut and jabal by force with no discussion but how much will be able to maintain its positions? Especialy now that he is also in irak syria yemen and god knows where...
And anyway it has been 10 years since 2005 and what did 14march do? Except concetion after concetions? I did vote mostly 14march, not because they are clean and present an evolution in lebanese politics but bc i am against hezbos arms (like i am against any millicia arms) mainly... And what did u got???
Now if the people in the riad al solh square wont b able to do a revolution, the hope of change alone will be alreaddy better than any accomplishement of 14march guys....
It is sad but it is the truth...

Thumb -phoenix1 27 August 2015, 00:38

Lubnani, the road map is coming, but it's a people's revolution and they are doing all they can to keep the crocodiles from joining in, remember, they are young and clean, don't judge them prematurely, they've already done more than my generation did, and in a lot shorter time, they've jolted the mafia, that alone means everything, do stay tuned.

Missing imagine_1979 26 August 2015, 20:05

Just a troll using fake username.... U are that desperate man?
Don't u hv any decent coment?
Fancy some chupachups?...

Default-user-icon Dorian Khoury (Guest) 26 August 2015, 23:37

The government and tv channels are listening. Keep it peaceful on saturday so that we show our country in a better light. Tv is showing companies discussing decomposting etcetra. Lets be together moving forward to be an example to the world.
سوا رح ننضف هالبلد.. هلأ رح تطلع صورتنا الحلوة

Thumb freedomarch 26 August 2015, 23:50

Exacly right confirmed by walid aboud show tonight, they refused to blame hizbollah and own Only salam mashnouk when asked what abut the militias of hizbolah they didnt answer, their ideal people are: Najah Wakeem, Nahas, and a guy from teachers union, all trash to begin with. When asked what is your goal? They answered, government resign , parlamant elections then the president at last. What a bunch of Hizbolah clouns.