Beirut blast: Lebanese judge orders detention of top officials
Aug. 8, 2020 - A Beirut judge has ordered the detention of the director of Lebanese customs and a port director, after the massive blast at the Beirut City port on Aug. 4.
Lebanese customs boss Badri Daher, his predecessor, Shafik Merhi, and port director Hassan Kuraitim will reportedly be kept in detention as long as investigations into the disaster continue.
A Lebanese court had on Aug. 6 detained 16 people in connection with the blast.
According to the Lebanese Health Ministry, over 154 people have been reportedly killed in the twin explosion, more than 4,000 injured with many still missing
Rescue workers and volunteers have been working tirelessly to remove large chunks of debris in the search for survivors and victims.
“We are doing our best as we hope to find people alive and trapped, but all we have found so far are unrecognisable remains,” said a rescue worker who said he had been working non-stop for the past 48 hours.
President Michel Aoun vowed that the government would investigate the cause of the blast, stressing that “the investigation will include direct officials.”
Aoun pointed out that the incident could have been caused “by negligence or external interference by a missile or bomb.”