Morning scene shows Beirut port in ruins after massive explosion

Marco Green
August 6, 2020

Lebanon's Supreme Defence Council recommended declaring Beirut a disaster-stricken city following a massive explosion, declaring a two-week state of emergency in the capital and handing over security responsibility to military authorities.

The big picture: The Lebanese government has said the blast most likely came from a 2,750-ton stockpile of ammonium nitrate, a highly explosive chemical used to make fertilizer.

At the White House, President Trump told reporters that USA military generals believed the explosion was caused by a bomb.

The Defence Secretary confirmed that the Royal Navy will send HMS Enterprise, a survey vessel now based in Cyprus, to help Beirut prepare to rebuild its port following the catastrophic blast which left thousands injured and more than 100 dead. "Most believe it was an accident, as reported". The latter had reportedly been in the port since it was seized in 2014, with Lebanese media reports suggesting conditions in the warehouse were far from being optimal for a fertiliser that can become volatile and explode. "It's obviously a tragedy". Lebanon's struggling right now in a number of ways and it's a shame to see it happen. I spoke to Secretary Pompeo this morning.

Mr Wallace added that the ship will assess the damage and support "the Lebanese government and people rebuild this vital piece of national infrastructure". "We're positioning ourselves to provide them whatever assistance we can - humanitarian aid, medical supplies, you name it - to assist the people of Lebanon".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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