Lebanon's economic crisis hits the street and the piste

More than 300 people have been treated for injuries following hours of clashes between security forces and protesters that rocked central Beirut on Saturday (January 18) night.

That's the highest toll in some of the most intense violence since largely peaceful protests erupted across the country in October.

Security forces fired volleys of tear gas and deployed water cannon while protesters hurled stones, steel barriers and flower pots.

With Lebanon sinking deeper into its worst economic crisis in decades, anger has boiled over at the ruling elite.

The Lebanese pound has lost nearly half its value and dollar shortages have driven up prices.

The impact of that is not just being felt on Beirut's chaotic streets but also on the snowy pistes of one of Lebanon's most popular ski resorts.

Numbers are down and several slopes have been closed at the Mzaar ski resort which has slashed prices by 30 percent to entice skiers.

Nicole Wakim Freiha is the resorts marketing and development manager.


"It is still slow, it is still slow, but the weather is great and the snow as well, so we're inviting everyone to come."

Tourism has traditionally been an important part of the Lebanese economy, but the worst economic crisis since the 1975-1990 war has led banks to impose tight restrictions - forcing even those with money to think carefully before they spend.