The Ministry of Education and Higher Education announced early Monday afternoon that all public and private schools in Lebanon would remain closed until Wednesday, following the powerful earthquake felt overnight and given the stormy weather conditions in the country.
"Following the earthquake, the report of aftershocks, and in view of the weather conditions and the worsening of the storm in Lebanon, caretaker Education Minister Abbas Halabi announces the closure of all public and private schools, high schools, institutes and higher education institutions on Tuesday and Wednesday," the ministry said on Monday, according to a statement published on the state-run National news agency.
In a statement, the ministry added that this closure will prevail "until the storm dissipates and the state of the roads is ascertained, for fear that the frost will cause slippage and to preserve the safety of students, pupils and faculty members."
Schools opened in a scattered fashion on Monday. In the Bekaa plain, all schools were closed according to L'Orient Today's local correspondent; in other regions, each school took the decision whether to open or not.
Early Monday morning, an earthquake measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale, the epicenter of which was in Nurdagi, a city in southern Turkey, was felt throughout the region, including in Lebanon. Nurdagi is located about 450km north of Beirut near the Turkish-Syrian border.