Before and after satellite images show Beirut port decimated

The images show Beirut port decimated by the blast. (Satellite Image ©2020 Maxar Technologies)
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Updated 05 August 2020

Before and after satellite images show Beirut port decimated

  • The images from Maxar show a huge crater now filled with sea water next to a grain silo building
  • A passenger ship can be seen capsized by the blast
 

LONDON: High-resolution satellite images have revealed the scale of the destruction wrought upon Lebanon’s main port after twin explosions killed more than 100 people.

The images were taken from satellites belonging to US-based imaging company Maxar.

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The after image shows a huge crater now filled with sea water next to a grain silo building which somehow wasn’t completely flattened.

Every other warehouse in the image has been flattened, with just the steel skeletons remaining. Across the other side of the dock, a passenger ship, the Orient Queen, has been blown on to its side by the blast, while other vessels appear destroyed.

 

 

Lebanese officials say 2,750 tonnes of highly explosive ammonium nitrate had been stored for six years at the port without safety measures. Reuters reported that a fire started at one warehouse before it spread to another storing the chemical, which is used in fertilizer and bombs. 

Videos showed a fire and an initial explosion before the massive second explosion sent a shockwave across the city, killing scores, wounding thousands and destroying and damaging buildings.

The blast was felt in Cyprus almost 200 kilometers away. Sim Tack, an analyst and weapons expert at the Texas-based private intelligence firm Stratfor, said based on the crater and glass windows being blown out a distance away, the warehouse exploded with the force equivalent to detonating at least 2.2 kilotons of TNT.

* With Agencies


Lebanon finds four bodies after deadly sea crossing

Updated 12 min 3 sec ago

Lebanon finds four bodies after deadly sea crossing

  • UN peacekeepers retrieved one body and rescued 36 people from a boat in trouble in international waters off the Lebanese coast
  • Families of the survivors said the boat had been adrift without food or water for around a week
BEIRUT: Lebanon has retrieved the bodies of four people including a child after they tried to flee the crisis-hit country by sea on an overloaded dinghy, the civil defense said Monday.
A week ago, UN peacekeepers retrieved one body and rescued 36 people from a boat in trouble in international waters off the Lebanese coast.
Families of the survivors said the boat had been adrift without food or water for around a week, during which time several passengers had died or jumped overboard to find help.
The bodies are presumed to be from the same ill-fated crossing.
Since Friday, “we have retrieved four bodies — belonging to two Lebanese, one of whom was a child, a young Indian man and a Syrian man,” Samir Yazbek, the head of the civil defense’s sea rescue unit, told AFP.
The bodies were found in four separate locations off the north and south coasts of the country, and the search was ongoing, he added.
The UN refugee agency said last week that 25 Syrians, eight Lebanese and three people of other nationalities had been rescued from the boat.
It is unclear how many men, women and children originally clambered aboard the dinghy, and therefore how many are still missing.
On Saturday, the navy said it would step up its searches within and outside Lebanon’s territorial waters to find any other victims.
Relatives of those who went missing from the impoverished north Lebanese city of Tripoli say the people smuggler involved in the crossing has dropped off the radar since the tragedy.
They have filed three legal complaints against the man, who they say is a well-known figure in the community.
A military source on Saturday said a person acting as an intermediary between passengers and the boat owner had been arrested.
In recent weeks, dozens of Lebanese and Syrians have tried to make the perilous sea journey from Lebanon to the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, authorities on both sides say.
The Republic of Cyprus, a European Union member, lies just 160 kilometers (100 miles) away.
Lebanon is in the throes of its worst economic crisis in decades, compounded since February by the novel coronavirus pandemic.
It is also reeling from a monster blast at Beirut’s port last month that killed more than 190 people, ravaged large parts of the capital and reignited public anger against the political class.