Retired Servicemen Stage Sit-in Outside VAT Building
Retired military servicemen on Wednesday staged a sit-in outside the Finance Ministry’s VAT building protesting austerity government measures and delays to end-of-service payments, medical aid and benefit cuts.
The protesters blocked the entrances to the building amid tight security measures.
Retired Brig. Gen. George Nader told LBCI TV station outside the Value-Added Tax building: “Today's sit-in is only a warning to shed the light on the rights of retired military servicemen,” he said, warning of “escalatory” measures if their demands are not met.
Retired Brig. Gen. Andreh Abu Maashar said: “We will not block any roads with burning tires today, because the whole Lebanese are suffering like the veterans are. The authority's performance is unacceptable.”
The veterans held a series of protests earlier against deductions to their pensions in the 2019 state budget which introduced austerity measures and increased income and import taxes and suspended early retirement schemes for three years.
Army veterans say the measures cut deep into their pensions and benefits.