Beirut Blast — Merkel Offers German Support

  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed her condolences to the victims of the Beirut explosion, pledging to provide aid to Lebanon
  • German relief team is heading to Beirut and German organizations are collecting donations for the victims of the explosion
  • Former Lebanese heads of government called for an international or Arab investigation committee

German Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed her condolences to the victims of the Beirut explosion, pledging to provide aid to Lebanon. At the same time, a German relief team is heading to Beirut, and German organizations are collecting donations for the victims of the explosion.

On the evening of 4 August 2020, at 18:08 EEST, multiple explosions occurred in the city of Beirut, the capital of Lebanon. The main explosion was linked to approximately 2,750 tonnes (3,030 short tons) of ammonium nitrate that had been confiscated by the government from an abandoned ship and stored in the port without proper safety measures for the previous six years.

Merkel and her foreign minister, Heiko Maas, pledged urgent assistance to Lebanon in the wake of the devastating explosion that occurred at the port of Beirut on Tuesday. On Wednesday, Merkel sent a message of condolence to the Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab

“I was very dismayed to learn of the severe explosion in Beirut, which has claimed many victims,” wrote Merkel. “In this difficult time, you can count on the help and support of the German government.”

Maas made similar statements to reporters, and tweeted, “my thoughts are with the relatives of the victims.” He added, “Germany stands by Lebanon in this difficult hour.”

“With the German Armed Forces and our humanitarian workers, we are looking at how we can provide further help for clearing up and supplying the civilian population,” Maas added. “The images of the devastation in Beirut hit us right in the heart, they hurt.”

Maas also said that some of the relief organizations will leave Germany today, if possible, to Beirut to help search for missing persons.

Maas said that it is not possible to understand the extent of the damage that took place. The German army is studying the assistance that can be provided if the Lebanese government and the crisis monitoring committee in the Lebanese Foreign Ministry deem it necessary and feasible.

A spokesman for the Ministry of Defense said that a German navy cruiser, operating as part of the United Nations UNIFIL mission from Cyprus, had replaced a Brazilian frigate in the UN mission, off the Lebanese coast.

Heiko Maas is a German politician who serves as the Minister of Foreign Affairs in the fourth cabinet of Angela Merkel since March 14, 2018. He served as the Federal Minister of Justice and Consumer Protection from December 17, 2013 to March 14, 2018.

The spokesman added that the largest frigate was now ready to provide assistance, and the spokesman announced that the German army’s medical evacuation planes were ready to transport the seriously wounded people.

In the same context, many German organizations have set up donation accounts for the victims of the horrific explosion in Beirut, which killed dozens and injured thousands.

According to data from the German Donation Council, among these organizations are the German Red Cross, the Islamic Relief Society in Germany, and the Maltese Relief Service. Citizens can donate on the website of each initiative or via bank transfer.

A violent explosion occurred in the port of the Lebanese capital on Tuesday evening, killing at least 100 people and injuring 4,000, in an event that shook Lebanon and shocked the world.

Former Lebanese heads of government Najib Mikati, Fouad Siniora, Saad Hariri, and Tamam Salam demanded the formation of an international or Arab investigation committee to uncover the causes and circumstances of the explosion that rocked the port of Beirut.

They also demanded, according to a statement issued by Prime Minister Hariri’s media office, “all the devices in the port to work together to protect the scene of this crime.”

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Benedict Kasigara

I have been working as a freelance editor/writer since 2006. My specialist subject is film and television having worked for over 10 years from 2005 during which time I was the editor of the BFI Film and Television.

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