Beirut explosion: Seven still missing after port blast, says Lebanese army

Lebanese army soldiers stand guard in front of destroyed ships at the scene where an explosion hit the seaport of Beirut, Lebanon. (AP)

The Lebanese army said on Saturday that seven people, including at least three Lebanese nationals, remained missing after an August 4 blast at Beirut port that left at least 188 dead.

“Search and rescue operations will not stop until the missing are found,” said army spokesman Elias Aad during a press conference.

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There are still “seven missing people: three Lebanese nationals whose relatives have submitted DNA samples, three Syrian nationals and one Egyptian national,” he told reporters.

The army spokesman said the figure was compiled from data submitted by the country’s Internal Security Forces, in coordination with the Red Cross.

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The ISF last week said it had identified the remains of 33 people who had gone missing following the explosion.

The health ministry said Saturday the death toll from the blast had climbed to 188.

The explosion of a huge stockpile of ammonium nitrate fertiliser in the port of Beirut also injured at least 6,500 people and left tens of thousands more homeless, piling new misery on the city after months of economic crisis and the coronavirus pandemic.

An estimated 300,000 people including around 100,000 children, whose homes were damaged or destroyed in the blast, face a lack of access to critical safe water and sanitation services, UNICEF warned on Friday.

“As COVID-19 cases continue to surge, it is more critical than ever to ensure that children and families whose lives were turned upside down by the explosion have access to safe water and sanitation,” said UNICEF Lebanon Representative Yukie Mokuo.

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Last Update: Friday, 13 November 2020 KSA 09:18 - GMT 06:18
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