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Two Sri Lankans injured in massive Beirut blast that has killed dozens – Ambassador

ECONOMYNEXT – The Sri Lankan embassy in Lebanon has confirmed that two Sri Lankans have been injured in the massive explosion that occurred in the Lebanese capital Beirut yesterday, Sri Lanka’s envoy to Lebanon said.

In a press release, Sri Lanka’s Ambassador in Beirut Shani Karunaratne said that as a result of the explosion, minor damage has been caused to the embassy premises and the residents of the officials.

She added that no embassy staff have been harmed by the explosion.

The explosion in a warehouse which had stored thousands of tons of explosive material killed 80 people and left more than 4,000 injured, according to foreign media.

Mangala Randeniya, the Deputy General Manager for the Foreign Employment Bureau told Economy Next that the casualties among the Sri Lankans cannot be confirmed at this time and the embassy is employing their full power to assess the situation.

There are between 25,000 Sri Lankans living and working in the country Karunaratne said.

The explosion is said to be caused by a large supply of unsecured explosives which were confiscated and stored away near the city’s port.

The Prime Minister of Lebanon Hassan Diab said the current investigations assessing the cause of the blast is focused primarily on an estimated 2,750 metric tons of the explosive ammonium nitrate, stored at a warehouse near the port.

However, the cause of the blast still remains unconfirmed as it was previously reported that it was caused by a fire. (Colombo, August 5, 2020)

 

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