Russia’s emergency officials said the country will send five planeloads of aid to Beirut after an explosion in the Lebanese capital’s port killed at least 100 people and injured thousands Tuesday late afternoon. Aid from France, Jordan, Qatar already arrived Wednesday morning at Beirut airport.
By Arthur Blok
International aid in the form of emergency workers and medical personnel is heading to Lebanon a day after a massive explosion devastated Beirut’s port, killing at least 100 people and wounding thousands.
Jordan says a military field hospital including all necessary personnel will be dispatched, according to the Royal Court. Egypt has opened a field hospital in Beirut to receive the wounded.
Czech Interior Minister Jan Hamacek says Lebanon has accepted an offer to send a team of 37 rescuers with sniffer dogs to Beirut. Denmark says it is ready to provide humanitarian assistance to Lebanon, and Greece says it is ready to help Lebanese authorities “with all means at its disposal.”
Saudia Arabia & UAE
Saudi Arabia said it was “following with great concern the repercussions of the explosion that occurred” in Lebanon after two massive explosions in Beirut’s port on Tuesday. The two blasts killed dozens of people, with the death toll expected to rise, and injured thousands. The blast was felt across the city and damaged several buildings and roads.
The Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs affirmed the Kingdom’s full support and solidarity with the “brotherly Lebanese people … and to protect Lebanon from all harm,” it said in a statement issued by Saudi Press Agency. The Kingdom’s government also expressed its sincere condolences and sympathies to the families of the victims and those injured in the attack, wishing them a speedy recovery.
Several other Gulf countries issued similar statements. The UAE’s Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed tweeted his condolences to the victims, saying: “We pray that God grants you patience and solace. God bless Lebanon and the Lebanese people.”
Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah ordered directives to send aid to Lebanon to assist with the recovery, while Bahrain said it “extremely distressed by the terrible explosion.” It also asked those in need of assistance to contact their embassy.
Lebanese Prime Minister
Prime Minister Hassan Diab, in a short televised speech, has appealed to all countries and friends of Lebanon to extend help to the small nation, saying: “We are witnessing a real catastrophe.” He reiterated his pledge that those responsible for the massive explosion at Beirut’s port will pay the price, without commenting on the cause.
Diab’s speech came the morning after the blast killed at least 100 people and wounded thousands. Smoke was still rising from the port Wednesday morning. Major downtown streets were littered with debris and damaged vehicles, and building facades were blown out. Lebanese Red Cross official George Kettaneh said at least 100 people were killed and more than 4,000 were wounded, and said the toll could rise further.
Source: with AFP and Associated Press