Dec. 16 (UPI) -- Dozens of people were injured in the Lebanese capital of Beirut as police and protesters clashed over the weekend, officials said.
The Lebanese Civil Defense said in a Facebook statement Sunday that it had treated 72 people for injuries including 20 people who were transported to the hospital.
It said it will continue to deploy forces "until calm is fully restored."
During the protests, demonstrators threw rocks and firecrackers at security forces who responded with tear gas, water cannons and rubber bullets in one of the most violent weekends since the protests began in October against government corruption and economic crisis.
The violence erupted over the weekend as the Lebanese parliament is set to deliberate Monday over whom to nominate for prime minister after Saad al-Hariri resigned in late October in response to the widening protests.
Interior Minister Raya El Hassan said she has ordered a "rapid and transparent" investigation into the weekend's violence and subsequent crackdown.
Meanwhile, Amnesty International condemned the response by security forces, calling it "excessive" and with the purpose to prevent protesters from practicing their right to freedom of assembly.
"Nothing justifies this excessive use of force," Amnesty International's Diala Haidar said in a statement on Twitter. "It only sends a clear message that security forces are above the law and will take whatever measures to end the protests when need be."