Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

4 Wounded by New Year Celebratory Gunshots in Lebanon

4 Wounded by New Year Celebratory Gunshots in Lebanon

Tuesday, 2 January, 2018 - 08:15
Fireworks explode over the downtown Beirut, Lebanon, during New Year’s celebrations, January 1, 2018. (AP)

Internal Security Forces announced on Monday that they will pursue people who fired gunshots in the air celebration of the New Year, which left four people with light injuries.

The tally represents a drop in the number of victims from last year, which can be credited to security efforts in cracking down on this phenomenon.

The ISF General Directorate announced that its efforts to maintain security throughout the country on New Year’s was a success, saying that no security incident was reported.

In addition, no one was killed in traffic accidents, but a few injuries were reported.

The security forces managed to arrest two people who fired celebratory gunshots, while efforts are underway to detain others. Their identities will be released in later ISF statements.

Opening fire into the air is a phenomenon that not only plagues Lebanon, but other Arab countries, such as Syria, Yemen, Iraq and Egypt to name a few.

Head of the Permanent Peace Movement Fadi Abi Allam credited the drop in celebratory gunshot fire to its awareness campaigns and others carried out by the security forces over several months and years.

“They have gone above and beyond in order to eliminate this phenomenon,” he told Asharq Al-Awsat.

The phenomenon is a result of the prevalent culture that needs to be educated so that it can change its habits, he continued.

One of the efforts being exerted lies in imposing a fine, a prison sentence of six months and barring perpetrators from obtaining weapons permits, he explained.

Another angle being addressed is educating the public on the dangers of shooting fire into the air and “portraying the shooter as ignorant and weak,” Abi Allam said.

These efforts are being exerted through the media, education systems and various organizations and parties.

Editor Picks