One explosion changed a country’s economic state in a matter of minutes. Although the exact cause of the Beirut explosion remains undetermined, officials state the first blast may have been in a fireworks warehouse at the port, according to the New York Times.
As investigators continue to search for an answer, early investigations indicate the “2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate” that exploded is believed to have been from a “Russian-owned vessel that stopped in Beirut while sailing in 2013,” according to the New York Times.
The blasts caused severe damage to buildings, warehouses and affected many areas in the country, including grain silos at the port storing around 85% of the country’s gain.
Countries, such as China, France, United Kingdom, Australia, Bangladesh, Egypt, Jordan and many more regional countries offered to help Lebanon after the blast, according to Al Jazeera. China has sent a medical team and supplies, as a friendly country to Lebanon.
French President Emmanuel Macron offered medical and other aid for the Lebanese people on a visit to Beirut after the explosion, according to Al Jazeera. A French rescue team searches for potential survivors at the destroyed port.
The United Kingdom sent a British Royal Navy ship to Lebanon and pledged a $6.6 million humanitarian support package for Lebanon.
France offered support but Macron said crisis-hit Lebanon would “continue to sink” unless its leaders carry out reforms and political changes.
“As head of the government, I will not relax until we find the responsible party for what happened, hold it accountable, and apply the most serious punishments against it,” Prime Minister Hassan Diab said, according to the New York Times.
Evidence shows that Lebanon officials were aware of the risks of storing ammonium nitrate at the port, but failed to show concern.
The aftermath of the Beirut explosion is concerning, as Lebanon’s economy is facing its utter worst in many decades.