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UN ignored plea for Beirut port disaster evidence, BBC says

A view of devastated Beirut port after the August 2020 massive explosion, in Beirut, Lebanon on 3 August 2021 [Hussam Shbaro/Anadolu Agency]
A view of the devastated Beirut port after the August 2020 explosion, in Beirut, Lebanon on 3 August 2021 [Hussam Shbaro/Anadolu Agency]

The United Nations repeatedly ignored requests from Lebanese bereaved families for information to help the official investigation into the Beirut port explosion which killed 219 people in August last year, BBC revealed.

According to the report, the probe into the blast has been beset by delays, rows and recriminations, leaving families and survivors no closer to finding out who, if anyone, was to blame, as BBC Middle East correspondent, Anna Foster, told.

The Beirut Bar Association sent three separate requests to UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, asking for all available satellite photos taken by member states on the day of the Port of Beirut blast.

The report says they also asked whether the UNIFIL (United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon) had checked the ship that carried the ammonium nitrate cargo that was responsible for the explosion before it docked into Beirut.

The explosion happened when 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate, stored unsafely in the Beirut port, warehouse 12, for six years prior to the explosion, ignited on 4 August. Nearly 200 people were killed in the blast, which injured thousands more and made at least 300,000 of Beirut residents homeless.

READ: US congressmen head to economically crippled Lebanon on fact-finding mission

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International OrganisationsLebanonMiddle EastNewsUN
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