Lebanon, Jordan join general strike to denounce Gaza conflict

A general strike was held in Lebanon and Jordan on Monday to demand an “immediate” ceasefire in Gaza, where more than 18,000 Palestinians have died since Oct. 7.

Palestinians in East Jerusalem and the West Bank also joined the strike, which was called by the Palestinian National and Islamic Forces coalition.

The headquarters of the Lebanese government remained closed for the “national strike day”, while the Foreign Ministry suspended its work inside the country and also at its missions abroad to “ask the whole world to adopt a position of conscience”, according to a statement from the ministry.

Several Lebanese trade unions and businesses also stayed closed on Monday in solidarity with the population of the Gaza Strip, leaving the streets of several neighborhoods of Beirut, and the towns of Tyre, Tripoli and Akkar almost deserted.

In parallel to the strike, dozens of people gathered in Beirut to demand “an immediate ceasefire”, a rally where demonstrators waved Palestinian flags and chanted slogans such as “Stop the genocide”, while also condemning Israel’s attacks against southern Lebanon.

Secretary general of the Lebanese Council of Ministers, Mahmud Makkiya, ordered the closure of public administrations on Monday in solidarity not only with Gaza, but also with “the Lebanese border villages”, which have been caught in the crossfire since Oct. 8 between the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah and Israel.

Jordan’s state institutions remained open, while the private sector announced a total closure in response to the call for a general strike.

Several stores and shopping centers in Amman hung banners on their facades to announce their compliance with the strike and condemn “the Israeli aggression against Gaza”, according to the Jordanian state television Al Mamlaka.

By Mian Saeed Ahmed Khan