Lebanon protests enter 10th day with no end in sight, army tries to open roads

Lebanon protests enter 10th day with no end in sight, army tries to open roads
Lebanon protests enter 10th day with no end in sight, army tries to open roads

Protesters trickledback on to the streets across Lebanon on Saturday, despite army efforts tounblock roads, with no end in sight to a crisis that has crippled the countryfor 10 days.

A militarystatement said army and security commanders met to plan ways to re-open mainarteries to get traffic flowing again while "safeguarding the safety ofprotesters". People have closed routes with barriers and sit-ins as partof a wave of unprecedented protests demanding the government resigns.

Lebanon has beenswept by 10 days of protests against a political class accused of corruption,mismanagement of state finances and pushing the country towards an economiccollapse unseen since the 1975-90 civil war.

Banks, schools, andmany businesses have shut their doors.

"We won'tleave the streets because this is the only card that people can pressurewith," Yehya al-Tannir, an actor protesting at a makeshift barricade on amain bridge in the capital Beirut. "We won't leave until our demands aremet."

Troops and riotpolice deployed to main roads across Lebanon on Saturday.

The forcesre-opened some roads for a few hours on Saturday morning before people gatheredagain. On the bridge in Beirut, riot police scuffled with protesters who weresitting on the ground to keep it closed.

Protesters haveresisted efforts earlier this week to open some roads, including along a mainhighway.

Banks will stayclosed until life returns to normal and will pay month-end salaries throughATMs, the Association of Banks in Lebanon has said.

It has held crisismeetings in recent days in search of a way to reopen banks amid growing fearsthat a rush on them could deplete dwindling foreign currency deposits.

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