Hundreds of Shiite Muslims enraged by a TV comedy that mocked the leader of Hizbullah
took to the streets of southern Beirut on Thursday night, burning car tires and blocking roads — including the highway to Lebanon's international airport, police and witnesses said.
The trouble began shortly after a TV show on Lebanese Broadcasting Corp. — a privately-owned Christian channel — in which an actor spoofed Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, wearing the Hizbullah leader's trademark black turban and sported a similar beard and spectacles.
Hundreds of Hizbullah supporters immediately went out into the streets of southern Beirut, the organization’s stronghold.
Lebanese police refrained from dispersing the rioters, as officers stood by the side of the roads due to what one official referred to as the “sensitivity of the issue.”
However, soldiers did form a ‘wall’ separating Shiite and Christian neighborhoods in the city.
Hizbullah, for its part, called for the rioters to restrain themselves.
Roee Nahmias contributed to the report