Emergency services in Beirut are dealing with the aftermath of an explosion yesterday (4 August) that has claimed the lives of *at least 100 people and injured thousands.
An investigation into the explosion in the port area of Lebanon’s capital is now underway after it was discovered that the blast was linked to the unsafe housing of 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate in a warehouse.
President Michel Aoun is calling for a 14-day state of emergency and has promised that those responsible will be punished in the strongest possible terms.
A number of unverified videos and photos showing the moment of the blast and distressing reaction to it have been circulating widely on social media.
Aer Rianta International operates duty free shops through joint venture Phoenicia – Aer Rianta Co. S.A.L (PAC) at Beirut Rafic-Hariri International Airport under the Beirut Duty Free fascia, and elsewhere.
TRBusiness is reliably informed that there have been no company casualties, although the company’s port shop – understood to have been closed at the time – and warehouses were destroyed.
Another shop run by Interworld Duty Free was situated in the Port of Beirut Free Zone.
*Correct at the time of writing, although the situation continues to change by the hour.