Chinanews, August 6th, a comprehensive report, one day after the large-scale explosion in Beirut, Lebanese nationals still failed to get out of the shock. At present, the explosion that occurred on the evening of the 4th local time has caused at least 135 deaths, more than 5,000 injuries, and about 100 missing. The number of casualties may rise further.
The number of victims caused by the explosion is the biggest blow to the Lebanese capital. Apart from finding the exact cause of the explosion, how to reconstruct everything that was destroyed? Where will the 300,000 homeless people go? The most important logistics hub is in ruins. How to make up for its lack? Lebanon will face a series of problems brought about by this disaster.
The picture above is an aerial photograph of Beirut Port in the past, and the picture below is an aerial photograph after the explosion. The vicinity of the port was razed to the ground.
Through glass and shards in the dark
"It seems like being in a horror movie", "The whole city is full of glass", the terrified people want to know "what happened?"... At around 18:00 local time on August 4, an explosion caused a shock. Throughout Beirut, a large number of buildings collapsed and windows several miles away were shattered.
Witness Hadi Nasrallah told the BBC reporter that when he saw a fire in the port, he did not expect an explosion. After the explosion, he lost his hearing for a few seconds before he realized that something serious had happened. Then the glass of many cars next to him burst, and the shards flew everywhere, as did the glass of the building shop.
A witness near the port told AFP: “All the buildings around here have collapsed. I walked through glass and debris in the dark.”
On the evening of August 4, local time, a violent explosion occurred in the port area of Beirut, the capital of Lebanon. The picture shows people moving medical equipment in the damaged hospital.
After the explosion, injured people were everywhere on the streets calling for help or trying to find separated relatives and friends. A woman in her 20s yelled at the security forces and asked about the whereabouts of her brother working in the port area. She pleaded: "His name is Jad and his eyes are green."
In the disaster area, the sound of ambulance horns continued to be heard, and vehicles continued to move in and out to carry the remains.
Lebanese President Aoun said that the explosion is believed to be caused by 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate stored in the port warehouse for many years. He said that it is "unacceptable" not to store such a large amount of chemicals safely.
The authorities are investigating to find the exact cause of the explosion. At the same time, several port officials were placed under house arrest. The Supreme Defense Council of Lebanon said that those involved may face "the highest penalty."
The Lebanese government announced that it will enter a three-day national mourning period starting on August 5. The entire country has also entered a two-week state of emergency.
The combined picture shows the scene after the explosion on August 22, 2019, the port of Beirut, Lebanon, and August 5, 2020.
On the verge of survival
Because it is located on the east coast of the Mediterranean Sea, Beirut has a natural harbor and is an important cargo distribution center in Lebanon. However, the explosion destroyed everything here. This disaster put Lebanon on the verge of survival.
Russian satellite network quoted Lebanese economist Basem Ajaka as saying that Lebanon’s economic losses can be divided into two categories: infrastructure and food. "Infrastructure or direct loss is all movable and immovable properties destroyed by the explosion. It itself includes the completely destroyed Beirut port. According to our calculations, this will far exceed US$100 million."
He said, "The food loss is, first of all, the loss of grain reserves in ports such as flour and grains. There is also a logistics problem that will ensure the future import and export of goods."
However, the Lebanese authorities stated that their domestic wheat stocks are sufficient to meet demand for one and a half months, and the government will also import more wheat, so there will be no food crisis.
At the same time, such a huge disaster will cause a large number of companies connected with the destroyed facilities or close their doors, which means that hundreds or even thousands of people will inevitably lose their jobs.
Economic expert Malva Osman said: “Beirut no longer has a port. It must be rebuilt from the ground up. The scale of the disaster that everyone has seen is incredible. Lebanon cannot deal with these problems alone and urgently needs help, the sooner The better. The explosion plunged Lebanon into an abyss."
At around 6 pm on August 4, local time, a huge explosion occurred in the port area of Beirut, the capital of Lebanon. Many houses were damaged, glass was shattered, and pink mushroom clouds and thick smoke rose in the sky.
The port problem is more serious than seen
Lebanon lacks natural resources and is highly dependent on commodity imports. Now that the most important logistics hub is in ruins, how to make up for its lack?
Although the Ministry of Transport announced on the evening of the 5th that most of the cargo will now pass through the port of Tripoli, its capacity is several times smaller than that of the port of Beirut.
Basem Ajaka believes: “Even if the entire capacity can be distributed among the ports of Tripoli, Tyre and Saida, it will still be unavoidable. First, this kind of transport chain transfer requires a lot of money and time; , The throughput of these ports is not large. This means that Lebanon’s import and export volume will be severely reduced, and the country will lose a lot of funds accordingly.”
The governor of Beirut Province Marwan Abboud admitted that the damage caused by the big explosion in Beirut port area may exceed the previously announced assessment, and the damage is estimated to be up to 15 billion US dollars. He said: "The losses suffered are higher than previously announced, estimated to be between 10 billion and 15 billion US dollars."
Lebanese Government Information Minister Mannar Abdul Samad said after an emergency cabinet meeting on the 5th that the Lebanese government has announced that Beirut will enter a two-week state of emergency after a devastating explosion at the port, which may be extended. .
On August 5, local time, after the Beirut port exploded, only one wall was left in a wheat warehouse originally built at the port.
Many countries around the world lend a helping hand
Lebanon has experienced severe economic and financial crises since 2019. In 2020, the impact of the new crown epidemic has been superimposed, causing a serious shortage of US dollars and a serious depreciation of the Lebanese pound.
After the explosion, Qatar, Kuwait, Iran, Iraq and others all stated that they would provide emergency assistance to Lebanon.
The European Commission also issued an announcement stating that as the first step of emergency assistance, the EU has activated a civil defense mechanism at the request of the Lebanese government. It is currently dispatching more than 100 well-trained firefighters to help Lebanon. Urban search and rescue vehicles, search and rescue dogs and other equipment worked with the Lebanese authorities to treat the wounded.
The announcement also stated that the Netherlands, Greece, and the Czech Republic have confirmed their participation in the rescue operation, France, Poland, and Germany have provided assistance to Lebanon through the civil defense mechanism, and other EU member states have also expressed their willingness to assist.
The Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations also stated that it will send five aircraft to Beirut, carrying air mobile hospitals, medical personnel, rescuers of the National Central Aviation Rescue Team of the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations, and the Federal Consumer Rights and Citizens' Safety Protection Supervision Bureau for new crown virus testing. laboratory. The Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations pointed out that taking into account the new crown epidemic, all experts are equipped with special protective clothing and protective equipment.