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Lebanon president: Calls for probe into Beirut blast are effort to ‘waste time’

August 10, 2020 at 10:34 am

Smoke rises after a fire at a warehouse with explosives at the Port of Beirut led to massive blasts in Beirut, Lebanon on August 4, 2020. [Houssam Shbaro – Anadolu Agency]

Lebanese President Michel Aoun yesterday described calls for an international investigation into a blast which devastated Beirut Port and killed over 150 people as an attempt to “waste time”.

“President Aoun considers the demand for an international investigation into the port issue as aimed at wasting time,” the Lebanese presidency’s office said on Twitter, adding that the Lebanese judiciary “must be swift to establish who is a criminal and who is innocent”.

Lebanese political and party leaders have been calling for an “independent international” investigation into the explosion while others called for confidence in local efforts by the judiciary.

During his visit to Lebanon days after the blast, French President Emmanuel Macron urged for “an open and transparent international investigation”.

Meanwhile, six lawmakers and the Information Minister, Manal Abdel Samad, have resigned amid growing public anger following the deadly explosion.

READ: Lebanon Maronite Patriarch calls on government to resign over Beirut blast