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Lebanese protesters back in streets, major highways blocked

Lebanese protesters are blocking major highways with burning tires and roadblocks, saying they will remain in the streets following a televised interview in which the president urged them to go home.

Schools and universities closed on Wednesday, and banks remain shuttered — a reflection of the deepening political and financial crisis the tiny country faces.

A man was killed by a Lebanese soldier during Tuesday night protests, marking the first such fatality since nationwide demonstrations engulfed the country on Oct. 17.

An anti-government protester burns tires, as they close the main highways during ongoing protests against the corruption and the Lebanese politicians, in Khaldeh, south of Beirut, Lebanon, Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019. A local official for a Lebanese political party was shot dead by soldiers trying to open a road closed by protesters in southern Beirut late Tuesday, the army reported, marking the first death in 27 days of nationwide protests. (AP PhotoHussein Malla)

The protesters took to the streets after President Michel Aoun said in a televised interview that there could be further delays before a new government is formed. He also called on those protesting to go home, warning of a catastrophe if the mass protests keep paralyzing the country.

In this photo provided by Lebanon's official government photographer Dalati Nohra, Lebanese President Michel Aoun speaks during a TV interview at the presidential palace, in Baabda, east of Beirut, Lebanon, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019. Aoun said it could still take days to set a date for consultations with heads of parliamentary blocs for the naming of a new prime minister and added that the best option is for the new Cabinet to include both politicians and technocrats. (Dalati Nohra via AP)

Lebanese people pass by the scene where a local official for a Lebanese political party was shot dead, in Khaldeh, south of Beirut, Lebanon, Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019. Protesters had poured into the streets across Lebanon after President Michel Aoun said the formation of a new government might be delayed. (AP PhotoHussein Malla)

Protesters close a main highway with stones and burning tires during ongoing protests against corruption and politicians in Khaldeh, south of Beirut Lebanon, Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019. A local official for a political party was shot dead by soldiers trying to open a road closed by protesters in southern Beirut late Tuesday, the army reported, marking the first death in 27 days of nationwide protests. (AP PhotoHussein Malla)

A protester throws oil over burn tires blocking the main highways during protests against corruption in Khaldeh, south of Beirut, Lebanon, Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019. A local official for a political party was shot dead by soldiers trying to open a road closed by protesters in southern Beirut late Tuesday, the army reported, marking the first death in 27 days of nationwide protests. (AP PhotoHussein Malla)