Violent clashes continued in Lebanon on Sunday as security forces fired water cannons, rubber bullets and tear gas at protesters in Beirut angry over a deepening financial crisis and the inability to form a new government.
Politicians have failed to agree on a government or an economic rescue plan since the unrest pushed Hariri to quit as prime minister on October 29, paralyzing efforts to recover from a crisis that has shattered confidence in banks and raised investor concerns about its ability to repay steep foreign debt.
The Lebanese Red Cross said it treated 52 people and took 38 to hospital.
"It's clear that the more they [security forces] step up their violence, the more people's strength and determination grow".
"There was no justification for the brutal use of force unleashed by Lebanon's riot police against largely peaceful demonstrators in downtown Beirut", said Michael Page, deputy Middle East director at HRW. "And if you have money in the bank, you can't even get a hundred dollars out". Riot police chased after men and women near Lebanon's parliament late into the night.
Riot police fired tear gas and sprayed water cannon near parliament in Lebanon's capital Saturday to disperse thousands of protesters after riots broke out during a march against the ruling elite amid a severe economic crisis.
But before they all converged near the road leading to parliament, dozens of protesters flung rocks and plant pots filled with earth at the police guarding the institution, local television channels showed.
"Injured internal security officers were attacked by a number of rioters at Alwardiyah Hospital and American University of Beirut Medical Center", the statement says.
A Reuters witness saw police fire rubber bullets.
Meanwhile, banks have imposed informal capital controls, limiting withdrawal of dollars and foreign transfers.
"The police hit me", the architect, 25, said.
A female protester named Maya, 23, said she was attending the protest because politicians still seemed to be ignoring demands for an overhaul of the old political class.
Outgoing Prime Minister Saad Hariri, who stepped down on October 29 under pressure from the protesters, on Saturday condemned what he called a "suspicious and insane scene" blaming "infiltrators" for the violence.
Since then, the country's leaders have been dragging their feet on forming a new government.
Last month little-known former minister Hassan Diab was designated prime minister with the backing of Islamist movement Hezbollah and its allies, but a deal on a cabinet has yet to be announced.
People have also turned their ire on the banks - which have curbed access to savings - with some smashing the facade of the banking association on Saturday night.