Security forces in Beirut are on full alert after the leader of Hezbollah urged his party’s supporters to take to the streets. Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah insisted on peaceful protests to topple what he described as the US government in Lebanon and hold early elections. Nasrallah’s exhortations were immediately dismissed by the anti-Syrian Druze leader, Walid Jumblatt. But they struck a chord with some: “I will participate in the demonstrations until the last minute in order to achieve all the demands that will lead to a national unity government” said one man.
Six cabinet ministers resigned recently when multi-party government talks broke down. Pro-government MP Musbah Al-Ahdab: “If it is using the street to change the government, that would be allowed, in that case of course people will be moving to change the President but this will not be positive to have confrontation in the street.”
Attempts to form an international tribunal to try those suspected of murdering the former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafic Al-Hariri in 2005 are another source of tension. The UN Security Council is expected to discuss a draft document today after it was approved by the Lebanese government last week.