At least seven protesters killed in Beirut
Jan 28,2008 00:00 by UPI

BEIRUT, Lebanon - At least seven protesters were killed in Beirut, Lebanon, Sunday in confrontations with Lebanese troops, it was reported.

Dozen more demonstrators who had set fire to tires and closed major roads, along with one soldier, were injured when shooting erupted, The New York Times reported.

The Lebanese opposition movement Amal said the protesters were rallying against power shortages in the southern Beirut suburb of Shiah, CNN reported. An Amal spokesman told the U.S. network that Lebanese troops initially fired their guns into the air to disperse the protesters.

The Lebanese Broadcasting Corp., quoting the Amal movement, said a sniper fatally shot one protester while he was trying to help the army resolve the situation. The Lebanese network reported the sniper was not a member of the Lebanese army.

That shooting apparently triggered rioting that led to the subsequent deaths, the Times said.

"We are protesting because we want to live," said Hassan Hilal, an Amal protester. "And as long as this government is in office, we are going to die."

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