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For over two decades Abu Ali was a familiar sight in Beirut's Hamra neighborhood, where every morning he would sell kaak, the traditional purse-shaped bread, from his cart on the side of the street. When his cart was impounded and destroyed by the authorities last week, the 63-year-old didn't know what else to do but return to the same spot. As authorities across the city crack down on illegal street sellers and shops, Abu Ali now spends his mornings smoking and drinking bitter coffee, without the cart with which he earned his crust and sustained his livelihood for decades.Abu Ali admits to not having had a license to operate and hasn't had one in the decades he has been selling.While the source said the patrol that confiscated Abu Ali's cart was "routine," various agencies across the city are overseeing a crackdown on illegal shops and kiosks.Within 24 hours of Abu Ali having had his cart confiscated, Beirut Governor Ziad Chebib targeted another establishment that had been operating for decades without a license.
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