A massive unprecedented explosion was witnessed yesterday in the Lebanese capital often associated with livelihood and uplifting vibes, while the country lis living through an acute economic crisis. The blast described as the "Lebanese Hiroshima" has affected neighborhoods several kilometers away from the Beirut port, where thousands of tons of ammonium nitrate were impacted by a still-unknown reason, resulting in hundreds of deaths and thousands of injured and missing people.
The explosion, that rocked the whole city shattering buildings' glass all around, was reportedly heard in the southern parts of Lebanon as well as in the neighboring island of Cyprus, was registered as a 3.3 earthquake by the United States Geological Survey, which explains the scale of the enormous explosion and the destruction it's caused.
We felt this in Cyprus. Unbelievable https://t.co/6ro4bnUbNc— Emilia Papadopoulos (@emiliapaps) August 4, 2020
According to France24, the Lebanese President Michel Aoun explained that the blast was a result of a fire in a storage unit where 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate, used in fertilizers and bombs, has been stored for six years at the port without safety measures.
As they were mourning the victims and searching for information regarding their missing loved ones, Lebanese social media users expressed rage against government officials whom they held responsible for the national tragedy, calling for immediate persecution of everyone involved in the incident.
Some commentators named the Director-General of the Lebanese customs Badri Daher and other officials.
Why are high explosive material stored in the Beirut port?!— Luna Safwan - لونا صفوان (@LunaSafwan) August 4, 2020
Why are weapons stored there?!
Ask Badri Daher, Director General of the Lebanese customs. #Lebanon
This is Badri Daher, director General of Customs who is in charge of Beirut's port where thousands of tons of highly explosive materials were left lying around for SEVEN YEARS. We are demanding public execution #الاعدام_لبدري_ضاهر pic.twitter.com/GTf4dM7lUe— ج (@impeachjad) August 4, 2020
Calling for holding involved officials accountable immediately, Lebanese voices expressed extreme agony; saying that "corrupt" Lebanese officials, who have been sharing power "and always working for their own interest, are directly involved in killing hundreds of citizens."
Translation: "We will accept nothing but your resignations. Holding you accountable, putting you in jail, executing, and defaming you. We will accept nothing but to place you in garbage bags till you chock on your own corruption, audacity, and crimes."
2700 TONS of ammonium nitrate. Badri Daher and the rest will be held accountable for this massacre. This is the result of years of corruption and incompetence. This time it’ll be different, justice will be served by us.— Zein Mhaidly (@ZeinMhaidly) August 4, 2020
So far, the Lebanese Red Cross has reported at least 100 deaths and more than 3000 injured people. All figures are expected to rise as the search continues for people who have been missing since the explosion.
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