Clashes between Protesters, Mustaqbal Supporters in Central Beirut
Several clashes broke out Friday at Beirut’s Martyrs Square between anti-government protesters and supporters of al-Mustaqbal Movement.
Internal Security Forces members and army troops intervened several times and separated between the two groups.
The Mustaqbal supporters were flocking to the Square to visit the tomb of slain ex-PM Rafik Hariri on the 15th anniversary of his assassination.
The two sides charged against each other and hurled water bottles and sticks.
Mustaqbal bloc MP Sami Fatfat was present on the scene during the first clash and sought to pacify the situation.
“Friction is expected due to the presence of two groups on the street and my presence was not the reason behind the clash,” Fatfat told MTV.
The clashes renewed later in the day prompting the intervention of security forces.
Mustaqbal supporters also attacked a reporter and a cameraman of al-Jadeed TV who were present on the scene.
The Mustaqbal supporters accused protesters of hurling insults at them as the protesters said the other side had provoked them first.
A similar clash had erupted overnight in the area.