n a shocking incident that unfurled on live Lebanese television, a fierce debate between two well-known figures escalated into a brawl, necessitating army intervention.
Wiam Wahhab, a politician and former minister affiliated with the Hezbollah-led March 8 movement, and Simon Abou Fadel, a journalist linked with the March 14 anti-Hezbollah movement, clashed on the popular political chat show, Sar el Waqt.
The altercation was sparked during a discussion on the contentious issue of US sanctions on Lebanese individuals alleged to be involved in corruption and connected with Hezbollah.
The exchange grew tense as Mr Wahhab dismissed the sanctions as “worth as much as my shoes”. Mr Abou Fadel retorted sharply, “You can do whatever you want with your shoes later. That’s a problem between you and your shoes”.
Mr Wahhab’s reply was inaudible, and the argument swiftly devolved into a shouting match, with both men demanding the other to “shut up”.
The situation spiralled out of control when Mr Wahhab hurled his water glass at Mr Abou Fadel, who retaliated with a punch that sent Mr Wahhab’s glasses flying.
The studio descended into chaos as the duo exchanged a barrage of slaps and thumps, prompting the crew to intervene to stop the brawl and separate the feuding pair.
A video shared widely on social media later revealed the confrontation had moved outside to the studio car park. Mr Abou Fadel was shown being restrained by onlookers while the army stepped in to quell the scuffle.
Subsequently, Mr Abou Fadel re-emerged on the programme sporting a bruised eye and a bleeding forehead. “My face is a reflection of my conscience,” he declared to the show’s host, Marcel Ghanem.
Interestingly, this is not the first instance of violence erupting on Mr Ghanem’s programme. Last year, live on air, an altercation took place between members of the audience and supporters of the Free Patriotic Movement political party.
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