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Thousands protest in Beirut against tax rises

Thousands of demonstrators have descended on central Beirut to protest against a broad tax hike they say is unfairly targeting the country's working classes.

The Lebanese government is paralysed over a budget proposal that would raise more than a dozen tax rates to fund a salary increase for teachers and civil servants.

Demonstrators in Beirut on Sunday say the government has squandered public money through shady public-private contracts and should plug the budget deficit by addressing corruption instead.

The Lebanese parliament has twice extended its own term over disagreements on how to hold elections.

Polls are scheduled to take place in May, but top politicians are yet to give a green light.

AP

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