Beirut faces unprecedented disaster, toll reaches 135

World News

Lebanon's capital Beirut faced nightmare as the massive blast at city port death toll rose to 135. 

While describing the explosion and its aftermath, Lebanese Red Cross chief George Kettana said as it was "an unprecedented disaster." 

"Seventy-five of our ambulances have transported 100 dead and more than 4,000 injured so far and there are (still people) missing," he added. 

An onwer of a shop located in affected area, said "I experienced all the wars that took place in Beirut, and the attacks against it, but I have never witnessed such devastation in my life. How will we survive? Everything has been destroyed. We are tired. We want salvation." 

On the other hand, head of the Syndicate of Hotel Owners in Lebanon Pierre Ashkar, said "Ninety percent of Beirut's hotels have been damaged and there are large numbers of wounded people in hotels, including employees and customers." 

The Lebanese cabinet unscheduled meeting was held yesterday, in which a state of emergency has been declared for two weeks to maintain national security.

In the meeting, the cabinet ordered that all those responsible for the management, storage, guarding and scrutiny of the chemicals in the warehouse at the port put under house arrest, and vowed that those responsible for the blast would be identified.

While visiting the port, President Michel Aoun said "The city of Beirut has turned into a disaster city. But the enormity of the shock will not prevent us from carrying out investigations and revealing the circumstances of what happened as soon as possible, holding the officials and inattentive people accountable and imposing the most severe penalties against them." 

President Michael Aoun vowed before a Cabinet meeting on Wednesday that the investigation would be transparent and that those responsible will be punished.

"There are no words to describe the catastrophe that hit Beirut last night," he said. 

It is pertinent to mention here that, massive explosions at Beirut port have killed as much as 135 people, injured over 3,700 while destroyed and damaged neighbourhoods of the city whereas death toll expected to go up, according to the Lebanese Red Cross.

"Until now over 4,000 people have been injured and over 100 have lost their lives. Our teams are still conducting search and rescue operations in the surrounding areas," a statement said. 

A giant smoke cloud was seen at the site, before high speed wind shockwaves impacted the area near the city’s port.

Lebanese leader Hassan Diab said in a televised address that "What happened today will not pass without accountability." 

He added that "Those responsible for this catastrophe will pay the price." 

The two blasts occurred at a warehouse in the Beirut port shortly after 6 p.m. The explosions took place at a warehouse in the port area of the city that reportedly had been used for years to store nearly 3,000 tons of seized chemicals.

It devastated nearby everything.Warnings were also issued about a toxic plume of smoke that gripped the city after the blast.

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