Lebanon calm after riots kill 7; government declares mourning

Calm returned to Shiite Muslim neighborhoods of south Beirut on Monday after seven protesters died a day earlier in rioting and clashes reminiscent of Lebanon's 15-year civil war. The government declared a day of mourning, and Prime Minister Fuad Saniora ordered schools and universities closed for a day in an obvious attempt to prevent more friction between political groups. Sunday's violence was the highest death toll for a street disturbance since the country plunged into a crisis three years ago with the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, a turning point in Lebanese politics that sparked local and international outrage and forced the Syrian army to withdraw from its neighbor after 30 years of control.