2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate at the origin of the explosions in the port

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2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate at the origin of the explosions in the port


This chemical fertilizer and also component of explosives was massively stored in a warehouse at the port.


Image of the site of the explosions in the port of Beirut, August 4, 2020


© STR © 2019 AFP
Image of the site of the explosions in the port of Beirut, August 4, 2020


About 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate were stored in thewarehouse at the port of Beirut which exploded on Tuesday, causing death and unprecedented damage in the Lebanese capital, denounced Prime Minister Hassan Diab late Tuesday evening.

“It is unacceptable that a cargo of ammonium nitrate, estimated at 2,750 tonnes, has been present for six years in a warehouse, without precautionary measures”, he declared before the Superior Council of Defense which held a emergency meeting.

“This is unacceptable and we cannot be silent on this issue,” he added, according to remarks reported by a spokesperson at a press conference.

A component of explosives

Ammonium nitrate is a chemical fertilizer and also a component of explosives. “We will not know any rest until we find the person responsible for what happened to be held to account,” the Prime Minister promised.

The Supreme Defense Council “recommends” to the government to declare a “state of emergency” for two weeks in the city of Beirut.

During this period, a “supreme military power will be in charge of all the prerogatives in matters of security”, according to the closing press release of the Superior Council of Defense. The government is due to hold an emergency meeting on Wednesday.

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