Protesters attempt to storm Lebanese PM office
Beirut: Protestors, mostly people who attended the funeral of a Lebanese security official killed in Friday's car bombing here, attempted Sunday to storm the office of Prime Minister Najib Mikati in the capital centre, reported Xinhua.
According to Xinhua reporters at the scene, policemen resorted to teargas in a bid to disperse the angry crowd, who demanded the resignation of the prime minister and the government following the deadly bombing which left eight people killed, including Wissam Al Hassan, the chief of information department of Lebanon's Internal Security Forces, and more than 85 others injured.
There were also gunshots into the air by the police, witnesses said, adding that some injuries have occurred during the clashes between policemen and the demonstrators at the Grand Serail.
Mikati Saturday offered to resign after the fatal bombing in Beirut, but later suspended this decision upon the request of President Michel Suleiman.
He explained that Suleiman requested a time frame for him to consult with members of the national dialogue table over his decision to resign.
The Prime Minister's resignation came after an extraordinary cabinet session held at the Baabda Palace in the wake of the killing of al-Hassan. "This is a national issue and we are keen on preserving the nation. We do not want to leave Lebanon in a vacuum, " he added.
Lebanon's opposition leader, former prime minister Saad Hariri meanwhile called Sunday on angry mobs protesting the assassination of Al Hassan to immediately "withdraw from the streets."
"I call on all protesters to withdraw from the streets now. We want Lebanon to remain peaceful and democratic," he said.
Future bloc leader and former prime minister Fouad Siniora also called on protesters to demonstrate peacefully and refrain from resorting to any violent actions.
Citizens across the country have been blocking major roads and highways to protest Al Hassan's killing.