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Lebanese girl robs financial institution to pay for sister’s most cancers remedy

A Lebanese woman held up a Beirut financial institution on Wednesday and reportedly walked out with hundreds of {dollars} to fund what she stated was hospital remedy for her in poor health sister.

The transfer and one other heist Wednesday come as Lebanese depositors — whose financial savings have been devalued and trapped in banks for nearly three years amid an financial collapse — take issues into their very own arms.

Sali Hafiz streamed a stay video of her raid on a Beirut department of Blom Financial institution, through which she may very well be heard yelling at workers to launch a sum of cash whereas entrances to the financial institution have been sealed.

“I’m Sali Hafiz, I got here at this time… to take the deposits of my sister who’s dying within the hospital,” she stated within the video.

“I didn’t come to kill anybody or to start out a fireplace… I got here to assert my rights.”

In an interview with a neighborhood broadcaster after the heist, Hafiz stated she managed to free round $13,000 from the $20,000 she stated her household had deposited.

Most cancers remedy for her sister prices $50,000, she stated.

An AFP correspondent on the scene stated gasoline had been poured contained in the financial institution in the course of the heist, which lasted underneath an hour.

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Hafiz informed native media she had used her nephew’s toy pistol for the hold-up. 

Hafiz and suspected accomplices managed to flee by way of a smashed window out the again of the financial institution earlier than safety forces arrived, the AFP correspondent stated.

Additionally on Wednesday, a person held up a financial institution within the metropolis of Aley northeast of Beirut, the official Nationwide Information Company (NNA) reported. 

He was arrested, the NNA stated, with out specifying if he managed to take any cash.

– ‘Thanks’ –

Hafiz is a 28-year-old activist and inside designer, her sister Zeina informed AFP.

She stated the household had not been in contact with Hafiz because the heist and was not concerned in its planning.

Hafiz immediately become a folks hero on social media in Lebanon, the place many are determined to entry their financial savings and livid at a banking sector perceived as a corrupt cartel.

Photos and pictures of her standing on a desk contained in the financial institution carrying a gun went viral on social media.

“Thanks,” one Twitter person wrote. “Two weeks in the past I cried at Blom Financial institution. I wanted the cash for a surgical procedure. I’m too weak to carry a gun and take what’s mine.” 

Final month, a person acquired widespread sympathy after he stormed a Beirut financial institution with a rifle and held workers and prospects hostage for hours to demand a few of his $200,000 in frozen financial savings to pay hospital payments for his sick father.

He was detained however swiftly launched.

In January, a financial institution buyer held dozens of individuals hostage in japanese Lebanon after he was informed he couldn’t withdraw his overseas foreign money financial savings, a supply on the lender stated.

Native media reported that the shopper was finally given a few of his financial savings and surrendered to safety forces.

Lebanon has been battered by its worst-ever financial disaster since 2019. The native foreign money has misplaced greater than 90 p.c of its worth on the black market, whereas poverty and unemployment have soared.

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