Piles of splintered glass littered the streets of Beirut on Monday (30 June) after the weekend of violent clashes between left and rightwing gunmen.
Piles of splintered glass littered the streets of Beirut on Monday (30 June) after the weekend of violent clashes between left and rightwing gunmen. And although a new Cabinet was being formed to end the month-long Government crises, the fighting continued in the city, with the death toll at the end of the day at least forty-two. The official death toll for the week of fighting is put at 100, but other observers say it is more like 700.
The streets were almost deserted as people waited at home for an announcement from the Premier-designate, Mr. Rashid Karami, that he had formed the new Government they hoped would bring a ??? and an end to the crises.
A general strikes called by the Progressive Socialist Party leader, Kamal Junblatt, seemed to have taken a grip on the country and in Beirut many shops did not open.
The new Cabinet does not include representative of either the mainly Moslem Progressive Socialists or the right-wing Falangists - mostly Christians - whose supporters have been the main protagonists in the recent street battles.
In the delicate new Cabinet compromise left-leaning Moslem politicians are represented by Mr. Karami himself, and the Falangists by their political ally, Mr. Camille Chamoun. The former President is an old political foe of Mr. Karami's but he two were dramatically reconciled at a lunch on Monday given by President Suleiman Franjeh who has been mediating in the crises.