An explosion devastated Beirut, Lebanon on Tuesday, killing at least 100 people and injuring an estimated 4,000. Officials are still working to determine the total extent of death and damage.
The Lebanese Red Cross indicated Wednesday, in comments reported by The Washington Post, that the death toll had reached 100 people, and that around 4,000 people were also injured in the blast. Videos captured the enormous explosion that rocked the city, causing miles of damage.
Fox News reported Lebanese Health Minister Hamad Hassan said the death toll will likely continue to rise as hundreds of people still remain missing.
“New footage of the explosion in Beirut,” one user tweeted with another video.
New footage of the explosion in Beirut. pic.twitter.com/Ld0OgYO7Kc
— Global: MilitaryInfo (@Global_Mil_Info) August 4, 2020
“The video of the #Beirut port explosion that has hit me the hardest. A first hand perspective of what it felt like that has been circulating on WhatsApp,” another user tweeted.
— Tala Alrajjal (@tala_alrajjal) August 4, 2020
The explosion reportedly knocked out glass windows for several miles in all directions. Footage from the aftermath also showed cars turned over and debris for strewn across several city blocks.
The Tuesday explosion emanated from a building seen burning near Beirut’s port district. The exact cause and motive behind the explosion is still not known, but Lebanese Interior Minister Mohammed Fahmi said the explosion may have been caused by stocks of ammonium nitrate fertilizer catching fire. Such fertilizer can also be used in bombmaking.
Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab also indicated the explosion came from a chemical storage housing 2,700 tons of dangerous material. He indicated officials had warned about the storage facility since 2014.
“I promise you that this catastrophe will not pass without accountability,” Diab said. “Those responsible will pay the price. Facts about this dangerous warehouse that has been there since 2014 will be announced, and I will not preempt the investigations.”
“Latest pictures show the aftermath of a massive explosion in Lebanon’s capital Beirut,” BBC tweeted with footage from where the explosion likely originated. “Nearly 300,000 people are homeless and half the city has been affected by the blast, governor says.”
Latest pictures show the aftermath of a massive explosion in Lebanon’s capital Beirut
— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) August 5, 2020
“CNN drone footage shows some of the devastation caused by the massive explosion in Beirut. The blast rocked the Lebanese capital on Tuesday evening, leaving at least 100 dead and thousands injured,” CNN tweeted.
CNN drone footage shows some of the devastation caused by the massive explosion in Beirut. The blast rocked the Lebanese capital on Tuesday evening, leaving at least 100 dead and thousands injured. pic.twitter.com/WEmFCQ7BSi
— CNN (@CNN) August 5, 2020
During a White House press conference Tuesday, President Donald Trump suggested the explosion could have been the result of an attack. Asked for specifics on how he reached that conclusion, Trump referred to conversations he had with generals and military advisors.”
“I’ve met with some of our great generals, and they just seem to feel that it was. This was not some kind of a manufacturing explosion type of event,” Trump said. “This seems to be, according to them — they would know better than I would, but they seem to think it was a attack. It was a bomb of some kind. Yes.”
ImageSat International, a satellite intelligence company, shared satellite views of the damage caused by the explosion.
#Lebanon: #ISI #satellite image from #today reveals the severe damages caused by the explosion in #Beirut port.#BeirutExplosion #beirut_بيروت #beirutblasts,” ImageSat Intl. tweeted. “Before and After.”
— ImageSat Intl. (@ImageSatIntl) August 5, 2020
Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz and Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi reportedly reached out to Lebanon, through intermediaries, to offer humanitarian aid after the explosion. The Israeli officials used intermediaries because Israel and Lebanon are in a state of conflict and have no official means of diplomatic communication at this time.