The President of the United States, Donald Trump, said on Tuesday that the explosions registered in the port of the Lebanese capital, Beirut, “seem to be a terrible attack”, despite the fact that the Lebanese authorities have not officially confirmed the cause of the incident.
“It seems that it was as a result of the explosion,” Trump said at a press conference after being asked about whether he considers that the explosions were not an accident. “I have met with some of our best generals and they seem to believe that this was not a type of factory explosion,” he added.
“This was, it seems that it was, according to them, that they know more than I do, but it seems that they think it was an attack. That it was a bomb of some kind,” he said.
In addition, Trump has conveyed the “deep sympathies” of the United States to the people of Lebanon. “Our prayers go out to all the victims and their families. The United States is prepared to support Lebanon,” he stressed, before highlighting “the very good relationship” between the country and “the people of Lebanon.”
The balance of victims due to the two powerful explosions has risen to more than 100 dead and more than 4,000 injured, as confirmed by the Lebanese Minister of Health, Hamad Hasan, in statements collected by the newspaper ‘An Nahar’.
Sources quoted by the Lebanese state news agency, NNA, have indicated that the incident would have taken place in a port silo that houses a fireworks factory, while the director of National Security, Abbas Ibrahim, has said that they cannot be clarify the causes of the event until the investigations are completed.
Ibrahim has also highlighted that explosives seized in the port of Beirut have been in the area for years, without directly commenting on whether they have been behind the powerful explosion in the area.
In this sense, the Lebanese Prime Minister, Hasán Diab, has branded as “unacceptable” that 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate were stored “for six years” in a warehouse in the port, which allegedly caused the explosion in the area. , although there is still no official confirmation.
Videos circulating on social networks show an explosion and a large column of smoke in the area, prior to a second explosion of greater power that has caused enormous material damage in the surroundings, reaching to be heard in Tire and Sidon.
Faced with this situation, Diab has decreed Wednesday as a national day of mourning in tribute to the victims of the explosions and has asked for international help in the face of what he has described as “a catastrophe”, before adding that those responsible for what happened “will pay the price”.
For its part, the High Council for Defense has held an emergency meeting to address the situation in which it has decided to declare a state of disaster in the city and to recommend to the Government the declaration of a state of emergency, as the Lebanese newspaper ‘The Daily Star’.