Lebanon to observe Ramzan amid deepening financial crisis

People in Beirut are gearing up for the Holy month of Ramzan but without any outward decorations on the streets.

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Most cities across Lebanon display banners of candidates participating in the national elections. A few banners have been put up in certain areas asking people to make donations. As the country grapples with an economic crisis for the third straight year, large number citizens have been pushed below the poverty line.

The middle class has been hit hard due to the crisis as a number of people have been laid off due to closure of firms and shops across the country. The decline of the national currency as compared to the US dollar has led to deepening of the crisis.

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The Lebanese pound has declined to 90 percent of its value and prices have shot up as the country is heavily reliant on imports. The military’s monthly income has declined to the equivalent of $50. It previously stood at $900.

“Last Ramzan, the exchange rate was around 16,000 Lebanese pounds to the dollar. It has now risen to 23,000 Lebanese pounds to the dollar. The cost of fuel has doubled, and the prices of all goods increased,” Zuhair Al-Masrya a retired international football referee was quoted as saying by Arab news.

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