Lebanon Declares Two-Week State of Emergency

By VOA News |

The aftermath of the Aug. 4, 2020 blast in Beirut’s port area, Photo credit: VOA News

Lebanon’s cabinet declared a two-week state of emergency Wednesday in Beirut and ordered the military to place anyone under house arrest who was involved in warehousing explosive material that detonated at the city’s port, devastating entire neighborhoods and killing scores of people.

The declaration effectively gives the military full powers after Tuesday’s massive explosion.

The exact cause of the blast was not clear, but Lebanese officials put the focus on what they said was tons of ammonium nitrate that had been stored at port warehouses for the past six years.

The explosion devastated entire neighborhoods, killing at least 135 people and injuring more than 5,000 others, Health Minister Hamad Hassan said Wednesday.

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