Anger flamed across Lebanon as lawmakers approved five new taxes on Wednesday, including increasing the VAT from 10 per cent to 11 per cent.
The tax increases come in the latest wave of austerity measures to offer public sector workers – including police officers and teachers – new salary packages.
Tax payers held protests across the country, angered by the measures and calling for the government to tackle corruption within the political system to fund development rather than increase excises.
Protests in Lebanon today from Nabatieh to Tripoli in response to tax hikes which exempt banks. Protests to escalate in the coming days. pic.twitter.com/vhhY1NvFcy
— Ali (@Ali_Kourani) March 17, 2017
— Ben James (@BenJourno) March 17, 2017
Another large-scale protest is due to take place in Beirut tomorrow.
Some 6,000 people are expected to join the march which is organised by the Lebanese Communist Party.
The political group is calling on the government to “escalate social spending on health, education and development, wages and create jobs.” “We are protesting in rejection of unfair tax policies that pull money out of the pockets of the poor to finance waste and theft and corruption of power.”