Iran hit by new fire that destroys shipyard

1 / 2
A screen grab taken from a from Iranian State TV IRIB on July 15, 2020, shows firefighters combatting a blaze at the Delvar Kashti Bushehr boat factory in the Iranian city of Bushehr. (AFP)
2 / 2
A screen grab taken from a from Iranian State TV IRIB on July 15, 2020, shows firefighters combatting a blaze at the Delvar Kashti Bushehr boat factory in the Iranian city of Bushehr. (AFP)
Short Url
Updated 15 July 2020

Iran hit by new fire that destroys shipyard

  • Five to seven vessels were damaged by the blaze
  • The incident is the latest in a string of fires and explosions at military and civilian sites across Iran in recent weeks

TEHRAN: A fire broke out Wednesday at an Iranian shipyard in the southwestern port of Bushehr, damaging several vessels under construction without causing any casualties, local media reported.
"An extensive fire has engulfed Delvar Kashti Bushehr boat factory," with thick smoke covering the area south of Bushehr city, state television IRIB reported.
Five to seven vessels were damaged by the blaze, the cause of which was unknown, Bushehr government official Jahangir Dehghani was quoted as saying by the semi-official ISNA news agency.
Video footage on IRIB's website showed a fire truck and several men dousing smouldering vessels which appeared to be fishing boats.
Iran's only nuclear power plant is located about 20 kilometres (12 miles) from Bushehr.


The incident is the latest in a string of fires and explosions at military and civilian sites across Iran in recent weeks.
Two explosions rocked the capital Tehran in late June, one near a military site and the other in a health centre, the latter killing 19 people.
Fires or blasts also hit a factory south of the city last week, leaving two people dead, and the Natanz nuclear complex, about 250 kilometres south of Tehran.
Iranian authorities called the Natanz fire an "accident" without elaborating and later said they would not reveal the cause, citing "security reasons".
The string of fires and explosions have prompted speculation in Iran that they may be the result of sabotage by arch enemy Israeli.
The Jewish state accuses the Islamic Republic of seeking to acquire a nuclear bomb while Tehran insists its nuclear programme is entirely peaceful.


Lebanon’s death toll increases, historic buildings endangered

Updated 52 sec ago

Lebanon’s death toll increases, historic buildings endangered

  • The explosion forced nearly 300,000 to leave their homes
  • UNESCO warned that 60 historic buildings were at risk of collapse

DUBAI: Lebanon’s health ministry reported five additional deaths following the devastating Aug. 4, 2020, Beirut blast, increasing the death toll to 177, national Lebanese newspaper Daily Star reported.
It is largely believed a stockpile of ammonium nitrate in warehouse 12 exploded in a fire, initially killing approximately 73 people, but that number has continued to grow since then. 
There was also approximately 6,000 people injured and 300,000 forced out of their homes.
Meanwhile, UN’s cultural agency UNESCO vowed to lead efforts to protect vulnerable heritage in Lebanon, warning that 60 historic buildings were at risk of collapse.
The effects of the blast were felt all over the Lebanese capital but some of the worst damage was in the Gemmayzeh and Mar-Mikhael neighborhoods a short distance from the port. Both are home to a large concentration of historic buildings.
“The international community has sent a strong signal of support to Lebanon following this tragedy,” said Ernesto Ottone, assistant UNESCO Director-General for Culture.
“UNESCO is committed to leading the response in the field of culture, which must form a key part of wider reconstruction and recovery efforts.”
Sarkis Khoury, head of antiquities at the ministry of culture in Lebanon, said there had been at least 8,000 buildings reported as having been impacted by the blast.
“Among them are some 640 historic buildings, approximately 60 of which are at risk of collapse,” UNESCO said in a statement.
“He (Khoury) also spoke of the impact of the explosion on major museums, such as the National Museum of Beirut, the Sursock Museum and the Archaeological Museum of the American University of Beirut, as well as cultural spaces, galleries and religious sites.”
Even before the explosion, there had been growing concern in Lebanon about the condition of heritage sites in Beirut due to rampant construction and a lack of preservation for historic buildings in the densely-packed city.
A UNESCO spokesman said Khoury “stressed the need for urgent structural consolidation and waterproofing interventions to prevent further damage from approaching autumn rains.”
Lebanon’s government under Prime Minister Hassan Diab resigned this week following days of demonstrations demanding accountability for the disaster.