Lebanese youth synonymous with the future and change

Verena El Amil he spent all his savings to continue the revolution. He financed his own budget with just $1,000. candidacy to convert them 25 yearsin one of the youngest Lebanese to show elections. “I want to take the October 17 uprising to Parliament,” he proudly says, recalling the social explosion of 2019. El Amil’s stubborn story is the story of many other young people. Nail 88 people aged 25-35 They registered their candidacy for Sunday’s election. These unprecedented numbers, change in political culture hammered in Lebanese universities.

Just one year after the mass protests that shook Lebanon, student councils of major universities They gathered the seeds planted in the squares. held recently, secular candidates crushed its representatives. establishment A politician accustomed to winning with little effort. “Your organization was the fruit of perseverance in the uprising,” recalls Al Amil. He gained a place in his own university in 2020 with the Taleb movement he created.

After student councils, professional associations and new victories of the antisystemic movements. Lebanese youth turned to election campaigns. “Youngsters have proven that they are some very mature political actors those who challenge the perception that they are too immature to enter politics because they are young,” he explains. Nadim El Kak, researcher at Policy Initiative. At the gates of the elections, all these secular electoral victories during these two years are presented as a signal for change.

fight on campus

University choices in Lebanon are generally specify address The country will enter the general elections. “We express political speech we did it during the uprising in the streets, in the universities and in the unions; Parliament is another tool for doing that,” says Al Amil. sectarian system prevents the emergence of new faces that can change. stagnant politics of the country. In Lebanon, the prime minister must be a Sunni Muslim, the president a Maronite Christian, and the speaker of the parliament a Shia Muslim. Additionally, the hemicycle is split equally between both religions.

“These choices are critical point For a new era away from conflict and advocating policy proposals,” Al Kak tells this newspaper. Many of these young people who are leading change in their universities they will not be able to vote this Sunday, not yet arrived 21 years old. Curious contradiction. But that doesn’t stop them in a parallel warfare from their college campuses. “They are redefining the role of student politics; it is no longer confined to the university and is influencing political change,” adds this young researcher, who won the board of directors of the American University of Beirut in 2020.

definitely college It was where El Amil grew up, dreaming of representing his country. “It was a place where I could express myself politically and develop my thoughts,” he tells this newspaper, among campaign events. act by seeing it stable future in a country in free fall. In the face of government inaction, for example, cleaning and reconstruction works After the explosion in the port of Beirut in August 2020.

youth migration

Although the migration of a large part of the youth is a bitter reality. This 70% of people Among those who left Lebanon in the last two years 25 and 35 years. Experts are already warning of the dire consequences that these increased waves of immigration could have in the near future. “These young people are still very connected to the country”explains Al Kak, “many temporary need and if the country started to value human capital they would come back.” For every seven Lebanese who want to leave, there are three who decide to stay.

“There are people who are still here and who continue to struggle, and that’s a lot. brave”know the researcher. These young people are brought up in universities, squares, social networks. They work tirelessly to rationalize their decision not to migrate. “I introduce myself because this is the country i want to live inis where I want my generation to have the opportunity to live,” says Al-Amil energetically. The political machinery they face is trying to destroy them like a steamroller, but these young people from these built spaces insist on resisting.

Word hope dominates their speech. But this is not an empty illusion. They arm themselves political arguments, content suggestions and slogans. While the country is going through its worst days – the World Bank considers the crisis in Lebanon as one of the three worst in the world since the 19th century – remains resolute. enter the system and vaporize from the inside. And as he passes, the elders smile confidently. “For the general population, the youth movement helps bring that hope; tired and depressed they look to the next generation and trust that they will be the ones to keep the country afloat”, adds Al Kak.

Source: Informacion


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