Lebanon’s central bank on Wednesday announced it is ending fuel subsidies – a move that was highly anticipated and is likely to send prices soaring, heaping even more pain on economically ravaged households.

Lebanon’s caretaker prime minister has called a decision by the central bank to end subsidies to fuel products “illegal”, and called for an emergency cabinet meeting to discuss the move.

The Wednesday night announcement by the central bank is likely to send prices soaring in a country already in the throes of an unprecedented economic crisis.

The move had been anticipated for months as the bank’s reserves dry up, but on Thursday politicians distanced themselves and blamed the central bank governor, Riad Salameh.

Outgoing Prime Minister Hassan Diab, whose government has rarely held

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