The protesters expressed their objection to Mikati’s statements, in which he talked about raising prices and hinting at imposing taxes.
The protesters chanted slogans calling for Mikati to “bear the people’s pain and search for solutions to the financial crisis away from taxes that affect them and raise the cost of communications, water and electricity.”
Mikati had said from the Republican Palace, Thursday: “I tell the citizens, we can no longer provide electricity for free, water for free, and communications for free, because there is no money in the state.”
He added, “I also say to the citizens who talk about their money held in banks: we have to bear each other.”
Mikati’s statements angered the Lebanese street and public opinion, due to what activists considered “a simplification of the suffering of the Lebanese.”
Critics said on social media, “Mikati is one of the richest Lebanese personalities and has a fortune estimated at $3 billion. How does he want us to endure when the citizen is unable to secure his livelihood?”
Others accused the prime minister of “deliberately coming out with these statements as a prelude to imposing taxes and increasing the tariffs for electricity, telecommunications and other services.”
Some users pointed out that “electricity is not already available in Lebanon, communications are the most expensive in the world, and the Prime Minister’s statements are inaccurate and do not reflect the true reality of the people.”