Lebanese take to the streets to protest political stalemate

People stand outside their cars watching an anti-government march organized by the country's communist party, in Beirut, Lebanon, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018. Hundreds of Lebanese called for an end to a stalemate over forming a government seven months after elections. The Sunday protests were organized by the country's vibrant communist party, but drew others frustrated by the country's deepening economic and political crisis. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla)

BEIRUT (AP) — Hundreds of Lebanese took to the streets Sunday to protest against a political stalemate that has prevented the formation of a new government seven months after elections.

The demonstration in Beirut was organized by the Communist Party but drew others frustrated by the country’s deepening political and economic crisis.

Wearing red scarves and raising red flags, protesters complained about corruption, poor public services and spiraling public debt that is more than 150 percent of GDP.

One banner reads: “Off to the streets: enough talk. ” Protester Osama Assad said failure to form the government only “doubles the risks.” Hanna Gharib, of the Communist Party, said the protests would escalate.

Lebanon’s political factions are deeply divided over the war in neighboring Syria and other issues.

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