Beirut, Oct 20 (Xinhua/UNB) -- Samir Geagea, leader of the Lebanese Forces party, asked his four ministers on Sunday to resign from the government, the National News Agency reported.
Geagea, who is an ally of Prime Minister Saad Hariri, called on Hariri to resign on Friday in a statement published on the party's website following the protests that took place all over Lebanon.
Lebanese citizens took to the streets since Thursday to oppose the new taxes that the government was planning to impose on the people instead of adopting measures to cut the budget deficit.
Geagea has on many occasions voiced his rejection for the 2020 state budget discussed by the government, because it does not include serious reforms to cut the budget deficit which has reached 11.4 percent of the GDP.
Algiers, Oct 20 (Xinhua/UNB) -- Algeria's Defence Ministry Saturday said in a statement that Algerian army destroyed five terrorist shelters on Friday in the provinces of Batna and Skikda.
The official APS news agency quoted the statement as saying that in the framework of the fight against terrorism, the army discovered and destroyed on Oct. 18 five shelters for terrorists in search operations carried out in the province of Batna and Skikda, 410 km southeast and 500 km east of capital Algiers, respectively.
According to the source, these shelters contained "20 homemade mines, one shotgun, one carbine rifle and dozens of bullets of different calibers in addition to some black powder and detonation tools."
The security situation in Algeria has remarkably improved in the last decade, but clashes between security forces and terrorist groups are still occasionally reported.
Algeria has also deployed tens of thousands of troops on the southern and eastern borders in a bid to thwart the inflow of terrorists and arms amid instability in neighboring Mali and Libya.
Hong Kong, Oct 20 (AP/UNB) — Hong Kong protesters again flooded streets on Sunday, ignoring a police ban on the rally and demanding the government meet their demands for accountability and political rights.
Protest leaders carried a black banner at the front of the procession with a slogan, "Five main demands, not one less."
Some front-line demonstrators blocked streets not long after the march began.
Police had beefed up security measures for the unauthorized rally, the latest in the 5-month-old unrest rocking the semi-autonomous Chinese city.
Water-filled plastic security barriers went up around a rail terminal where the protest march will finish. The city's subway operator restricted passenger access to the West Kowloon train station.
Supporters of the movement gathered at the rally's starting point on a waterfront promenade. Many wore masks in defiance of a recently introduced ban on face coverings at public gatherings, and volunteers handed more out to the crowd.
Organizers said they wanted to use their right to protest, as guaranteed by the city's constitution despite the risk of arrest.
"We're using peaceful, rational, nonviolent way to voice our demands," Figo Chan, vice convener of the Civil Human Rights Front, told reporters. "We're not afraid of being arrested. What I'm most scared of is everyone giving up on our principles."
The group has organized some of the movement's biggest protest marches. One of its leaders, Jimmy Sham, was attacked on Wednesday by assailants wielding hammers.
Police on Saturday arrested a 22-year-old man on suspicion of stabbing a teenage activist distributing leaflets near a wall plastered with pro-democracy messages. A witness told local broadcaster RTHK that the assailant shouted afterward that Hong Kong is "a part of China" and other pro-Beijing messages.
The movement sprang out of opposition to a government proposal for a China extradition bill and then ballooned into broader demands for full democracy and an inquiry into alleged police brutality.
Jakarta, Oct 20 (AP/UNB) — Indonesia's popular president who rose from poverty and pledged to champion democracy, fight entrenched corruption and modernize the world's most populous Muslim-majority nation is to be sworn in for his final five-year term with a pledge to take bolder actions.
Army troops and police, along with armored vehicles and firetrucks, are deployed Sunday across the capital, Jakarta. Major roads are closed in a departure from the more relax atmosphere of President Joko Widodo's 2014 inauguration.
An Oct. 10 knife attack by an Islamic militant couple that wounded the security minister set off a security alarm and a new crackdown.
Western and Asian leaders and special envoys flew in for the event, including Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, China's Vice President Wang Qishan and U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao.
El-Arish, Oct 20 (AP/UNB) — Egyptian security officials and medics say shells hit two houses in the restive northern Sinai Peninsula, killing at least four civilians, including a child.
The officials said the shelling took place on Saturday in the town of Sheikh Zuweid. They said 12 people were wounded and taken to a nearby hospital. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief the media.
Last week, nine people of the same family were killed and six wounded when a shell hit a truck carrying civilians in the town of Bir al-Abd.
Egypt is battling an Islamic State-led insurgency in the Sinai that intensified after the military overthrew an Islamist president in 2013. The militants have carried out scores of attacks, mainly targeting security forces and minority Christians.