Three people were killed and twenty others wounded Thursday, October 14 during shooting during a demonstration organized in Beirut by the Shiite movements Hezbollah and Amal to demand the dismissal of the judge in charge of the investigation into the explosion at the port of the Lebanese capital, according to medical sources.
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A man was killed by a shot in the head and a second was shot in the chest, said Mariam Hassan, of the Sahel hospital, in the southern suburbs of Beirut.
The national news agency (ANI, official), reported a third death at Rassoul al-Aazam hospital, also in the southern Shiite suburb.
A demonstration to demand the departure of judge Bitar
Twenty other people were injured, according to the Lebanese Red Cross.
Ambulances were pouring in to take care of the wounded in the deserted streets, near the courthouse where hundreds of demonstrators had gathered to demand the departure of judge Tarek Bitar, at the heart of a smear campaign in recent days.
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AFP correspondents heard heavy gunfire in the area, as local channels showed men carrying small and medium weapons.
In a statement, the army reported shooting in the Tayouné-Badaro neighborhood, adding that it had "
cordoned off the area and its accesses
The patrols are looking for the people behind the shootings to stop them,
" she added, warning that the military would open fire on anyone who shoots and calling on civilians to evacuate the neighborhood.
Prime Minister Nagib Mikati called for a return to calm and warned against attempts to drag Lebanon into a cycle of violence.
The demonstration took place at the same place where the relatives of the victims of the explosion regularly gather to demand that the investigation be concluded.
Read also Port of Beirut: the investigation still hampered
It came just after the Court of Cassation dismissed complaints from former ministers against Bitar, allowing him to resume his investigations.
Bitar was forced on Tuesday to suspend his investigation after the complaints, sparking the most serious crisis in the Lebanese government since its formation last month.
The explosion on August 4, 2020 and caused by the storage without precautionary measures of huge quantities of ammonium nitrate left at least 214 dead, more than 6,500 injured and devastated several districts of the capital.