Days of unrest follow latest Lebanon lockdown

By February 4, 2021

Lebanon (MNN) — Monday cannot come fast enough for believers in Lebanon. Authorities added another two weeks to the nationwide shutdown, extending it through February 8th.

“The goal is to stem a surge in post-holiday COVID-19 cases and prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed,” Wissam Nasrallah says, adding that most medical staff were already past the point of exhaustion.

Nasrallah leads operations at LSESD – the Lebanese Society for Educational and Social Development – in Beirut. He says last week’s unrest in Tripoli demonstrates the exasperation felt by most Lebanese. Hundreds of protestors took to the streets for four days of demonstrations.

“People [were] protesting the measures and the fact that they have nothing more to eat. There was some live fire, and one of the protesters died,” Nasrallah says.

“People are really at the edge of a breakdown.”

Most Lebanese were already struggling to overcome economic and political challenges before the pandemic hit. Read our coverage of those challenges here. Half of Lebanon’s population relies on day labor for income. COVID-19 restrictions cut most daily service jobs, which means people have no money for food.

(Photo courtesy of LSESD via Facebook)

The latest price hike on basic commodities like bread delivered yet another devastating blow.

Nasrallah describes a display of desperation from one of the protests in Tripoli: “In a very symbolic gesture, a father left his two children at the feet of the security forces agent [as if to say], ‘I cannot feed them anymore. See what you need to do’,” he recounts.

Send practical help through LSESD here. Pray for the Lord’s favor upon LSESD workers as they serve people in Jesus’ name. Ask God to meet needs the government won’t.

“The government resigned after the [Beirut] explosion on August 4th. We still don’t have any official government that can take real measures and enacts policy,” Nasrallah explains, requesting prayer for Lebanon’s political class.

“As long as our political class doesn’t ‘wake up’ to the situation, things are going to get much worse.”



Header image courtesy of LSESD via Facebook.

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