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Damage remains after last week's explosion Damage remains after last week's explosion  (AFP or licensors)

Lebanon’s government quits over deadly explosion

Lebanon’s prime minister and cabinet resign in response to outrage over last week’s massive explosion in Beirut.

By Nathan Morley

The resignation of Lebanon's government came as anger over last week’s explosion continues to surface.

The President has requested the government remain in a caretaker capacity until a new cabinet can be formed – a process which could take some time.

The public have accused leaders of culpability through their alleged negligence and corruption, whilst protesters clashed with police for a third straight day.

Unsafe storage

The explosion was caused by tons of ammonium nitrate stored in a warehouse in the port, not far from Beirut city centre.

It is estimated that the explosion caused up to $15 billion in damage as well as leaving 5,000 injured and 300,000 homeless.

The death toll from the blast has risen to 220 with 110 people still missing.

To make matters worse, UN aid agencies say that a humanitarian crisis could erupt given Lebanon imports over 80 percent of its food.

Deep suffering

Even before the blast, Lebanon was suffering a deep economic crisis and struggling to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

On Sunday, international leaders took part in a virtual donor conference pledging nearly $300m in humanitarian assistance which will be directly delivered to the people through the United Nations, international organisations and NGOs.

11 August 2020, 16:01