Lebanon (MNN) — Lebanon’s Parliament has granted the military emergency powers, including the ability to override freedom of speech, the press, and assembly. Only one member of parliament voted against the measures, which were implemented by the sitting government before it resigned earlier this week.
The people of Lebanon have been forcefully protesting the government corruption that put the country into an economic spiral and enabled the deadly Beirut explosion last week. Many see this move as a way to protect Lebanon’s ruling elite against the fury of the people. This weekend, police and military were already observed using excessive force against protestors.
Unrest in Lebanon
Rex Rogers, president of SAT-7 North America, says the country sits in a precarious place after the explosion. “The social unrest has been quite significant or severe at times . . . There are people whose tensions are on edge, and they blame the government for long-standing corruption.”
This corruption led to the explosion in the port of Beirut, one of the largest non-nuclear explosions on record.
But Rogers says the corruption already had the country in a terrible state before the explosion, as economic troubles left many people in danger of starvation. “There’s been record of people literally robbing stores and apologizing to the owners saying, ‘I’m not usually a thief. I don’t like what I’m doing. But my children are hungry, and I have to do this.’”
Lebanon, Rogers says, has been known as a country with a lot of freedom. “It’s never been a militarily significant or powerful country throughout its history, but it has been and is now a very important country in terms of religious liberty.”
Pray that Lebanon’s military will not oppress the people and that those who are corrupt in the government will lose their power. Most of all, pray that in this time of uncertainty and unrest, many people would be drawn to the everlasting rule of Jesus Christ.
You can also support SAT-7 as they broadcast hope into this dire situation.
The header image shows the aftermath of the deadly explosion in Beirut. (Photo courtesy of SAT-7 USA on Facebook)