- Jan 20, 2020
Against a backdrop of anti-government protests in Iraq and Lebanon, at Christmas, Catholic patriarchs in the Middle East spoke of continued suffering.
Supporters of Lebanon’s two main Shiite groups Hezbollah and Amal clashed with security forces and set fires to cars in the capital early Tuesday, apparently angered by a video circulating online that showed a man insulting Shiite figures.
Lebanon’s president postponed talks Monday on naming a new prime minister after the only candidate — caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri — failed to win the backing of the country’s largest Christian groups amid a worsening economic and financial crisis.
While Lebanon continues to be engulfed in a massive protest movement, the country’s Catholic leaders called on demonstrators to be peaceful and civilized.
The U.S. bishops and the Knights of Columbus offered their “prayerful solidarity” to the Assembly of the Catholic Patriarchs and Bishops of Lebanon as Iraq and Lebanon experience protests against political corruption and foreign interference.
Protesters in Lebanon are also trying to overcome the country’s sectarian politics.