Municipal sources from South Lebanon tell Janoubia that the distribution and rationing of fuel by region, as well as limiting the distribution of gasoline of each town to strictly its own members have lead to the deprivation of neighboring towns from these resources. Even food and bread that are produced locally are sold strictly within while excluding outsiders. Every southern town has turned into a quasi-independent state!
The deep and old conflict between Amal and Hezbollah that had been kept under wraps for years is beginning to surface, as conflicts have erupted, in more than one region, causing a record number of incidents and injuries. In total, the outcome of the last 24 hours in the South alone was 11 wounded.
As a result of a conflict in Maghdouche, 6 men were injured after a group from Anqoun attacked a gas station that was opting to distribute fuel exclusively for town members. The conflict continued till the next day, as a group of assailants attacked Maghdouche locals near Zeghdraya and damaged their vehicles.
Another incident occurred around Safieddine station at a Qana junctions where dozens of gushots were heard causing the station to close down.
Jabal Amel station in Abbassiye witnessed another incident that involved a shootout. This came after a convoy arrived lead by the head of the municipality to meet the owners of the station and solicit fuel for the generators. They were met with open gunfire by an armed group closely connected to the station owners (of the Faraj family who are connected to Amal, and in particular to one of its MP’s in the south). This led to 5 injuries and massive tensions across the town. Many citizens later gathered around the municipality in support, as its members submitted their resignation to the Amal leadership in the Jabal Amel region.
In Bekaa, the extent of decline in traffic is becoming significantly clear. Attendance of employees has gone down to 20% in private and public institutions due to the lack of gasoline and its increase in price. Taxi fare has gone up to 10,000L.L from 2000L.L., and people cannot afford that because their salaries have remained largely the same. This has caused employees to essentially have to work for free!
A source at the Lebanese Social Security confirmed the impact of the rising transportation costs, and how it has affected the social security services and various public sector services. Attendance of employees has drastically decreased causing significant overflow in workload. Paperwork that used to take 15 working days to complete now needs up to 3-4 months instead!