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Lebanon's Nasrallah backs government amid raging protests
Parts of central Beirut looked like a war zone, littered with broken glass, overturned litter bins and the remains of burning tyres [Mohamed Azakir/Reuters]
DAILYNEWS Lebanon's influential Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said on Saturday that the Shia movement does not want the government to resign, as mass anti-government protests entered its third day.
Protests erupted on Thursday against proposed new taxes and have since spread to other parts of the country, posing a serious challenge to the coalition government headed by Prime Minister Saad Hariri amid a growing economic crisis.
Hariri has blamed his coalition partners for his government's failure in addressing the dire economic situation facing the Middle East country.
Nasrallah, in a televised speech on Saturday, called for a new agenda and "new spirit", adding that calls for government resignation were "a waste of time" since the same political groups will haggle over forming a new one.
Any tax imposed on the poor would push him to call supporters to go take to the streets, the Shia leader said.
Hezbollah group and its allies are part of the government that came to power last year after months of negotiations between political groups divided on sectarian and religious lines.
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