Lebanon drops plan to tax WhatsApp users

(AP) — Lebanese security forces fired tear gas to disperse hundreds of protesters in Beirut early Friday after they tried to push through security barriers around the government headquarters amid some of the largest demonstrations the country has seen in years.

The riots left two people dead and dozens wounded.

The protests started with a few dozen people gathering in central Beirut over the imposition of a 20-cent daily fee on messaging applications, including WhatsApp, an idea that a minister said was later dropped. They quickly escalated into some of the biggest demonstrations since an uprising over a garbage crisis in 2015, with thousands of people taking part.