Chaos at Beirut protest rally as gunfire erupts claiming lives

Three people were killed and 20 were wounded in gunfire during a Beirut protest rally organised to demand dismissal of Beirut blast lead investigator. The protest rally was organised by Shiite Hezbollah and Amal movements in Thursday.

One man died of a gunshot to the head and a second of a shot to the chest, said Mariam Hassan of the Sahel Hospital in Beirut’s mainly Shiite southern suburbs.

The state-run National News Agency reported a third death at the Rasoul al-Azam hospital, also in the southern suburbs. 

The Lebanese Red Cross reported 20 wounded. 

Lebanese television broadcast images of men carrying rifles and heavy weaponry.

The army reported  “bursts of gunfire in the area of Tayouneh – Badaro”. 

“The army rushed to cordon off the area and deploy in its neighbourhoods and their entrance. Patrols started as did the search for the shooters to detain them,” it said.

In a follow-up statement, the military warned that it would open fire at anyone firing live rounds, calling on civilians to evacuate the area.

Prime Minister Najib Mikati called for calm to be restored and warned against attempts to drag Lebanon into violence.

The Beirut blast had taken place on August 4, 2020 at the Beirut port when large amount of Ammonium Nitrate exploded. The blast killed hundreds and caused devastation in areas of the Lebanese capital.

(With inputs from agencies)