Death tolls reaches 137; around 5,000 injured
French President Emmanuel Macron reached Beirut on Thursday following Beirut’s huge explosions which has killed at least 137 people and injured nearly 5,000.
“I came quickly to support the Lebanese people after the explosion that took place on August 4. I had to visit Lebanon to highlight the strong relations between France and Lebanon,” Macron said from the airport.
Macron, who was received at the airport by Lebanese President Michel Aoun, said France has already sent support to Lebanon and it will send more medical equipment in the coming days.
Macron emphasized the need for Lebanon to implement structural reforms including the fight against corruption because the country is suffering at political, moral, economic and financial levels.
France sent three aircraft to Lebanon carrying medical equipment while transporting onboard experts in crisis management.
Meanwhile, Lebanon’s cabinet declared a two-week state of emergency in the capital city and handed control of security in the capital to the military following a massive explosion in Beirut that killed at least 137 people and injured 5,000 others.
The explosion on Tuesday sent shockwaves across the city, causing widespread damage as far as the outskirts of Beirut.
Officials said they expect the death toll to rise further as emergency workers dig through the rubble to search for survivors.
Beirut’s city governor Marwan Abboud said up to 300,000 people have lost their homes and authorities are working on providing them with food, water and shelter.
The cause of the explosion was not immediately clear. Officials linked the blast to some 2,750 tonnes of confiscated ammonium nitrate that were being stored in a warehouse at the port for six years.