/Beirut explosion: At least 100 dead, searching for more, after blast – Business Insider

Beirut explosion: At least 100 dead, searching for more, after blast – Business Insider


  • Rescuers are searching for survivors after a massive explosion shook the Lebanese capital city of Beirut on Tuesday.
  • At least 100 people were reported dead, with more than 4,000 others wounded, the Lebanese Red Cross said.
  • Lebanon’s prime minister blamed the ignition of more than 2,750 metric tons of ammonium nitrate improperly stored in the area. An investigation is ongoing.
  • A red-orange cloud — the color of which would be explained by nitrates — lingered over part of the city after the explosion, which leveled buildings and caused extensive damage.
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At least 100 people are dead and Lebanon is still searching for survivors after a massive explosion shook the capital city of Beirut on Tuesday.

Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab said the blast was caused by the ignition of more than 2,750 metric tons of ammonium nitrate stored insecurely at a warehouse. The explosion is under investigation.

“I will not rest until we find the person responsible for what happened,” Diab told reporters, NBC News said.

Footage of the explosion from many vantages around the city spread quickly on social media.

The explosion killed at least 100 people and wounded 4,000 others, the Lebanese Red Cross said. Rescuers on Wednesday were still searching for survivors amid rubble and leveled buildings.

Beirut

A picture shows a destroyed silo at the scene of an explosion at the port in the Lebanese capital Beirut on Tuesday.

STR/AFP via Getty Images


Some of the city’s hospitals were so heavily damaged by the blast they couldn’t admit patients.

Lebanese authorities told CNN’s Ben Wedeman that the ammonium nitrate was most likely seized from a ship six or seven years ago.

Local reports said the blast was felt dozens of miles away.

While initial state-media reports said the explosion was caused by a fire at a fireworks storage facility, Maj. Gen. Abbas Ibrahim, the director-general of Lebanese intelligence, attributed the deadly blast to the ignition of confiscated high-explosive materials stored at the local port.

The Lebanese prime minister later named the substance as ammonium nitrate.

Beirut

A view of the aftermath of the blast at the port of Lebanon’s capital Beirut on Wednesday.

ANWAR AMRO/AFP via Getty Images


President Donald Trump told reporters Tuesday that it “seems like” the devastating explosion was an “attack,” citing purported conversations with US military officials.

Three Defense Department officials told CNN there was no evidence suggesting that.

A red-orange cloud — the color produced by nitrates — lingered over the blast site after the explosion.

The extent of the damage remains unclear, but local reports indicated widespread damage in the city.

On Wednesday the country was to hold a national day of mourning.

Beirut’s Gov. Marwan Abboud said 250,000 people had been left homeless.

An injured man is treated after a large explosion on August 4, 2020 in Beirut, Lebanon

An injured man being treated after the explosion on Tuesday.

(Photo by Daniel Carde/Getty Images


The blast rocked the city as Lebanon was suffering a financial and political crisis, dealing with high unemployment and poverty rates, and the coronavirus pandemic.

Other countries have offered medical staff and aid, field hospitals, and other aid money.

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