A powerful blast in port warehouses near central Beirut storing 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate killed 78 people, injured nearly 4,000, and sent seismic shockwaves that shattered windows, smashed masonry, and shook the ground across the Lebanese capital on Tuesday, August 4, 2020, afternoon after 18:00 local time.
The Indonesian Ambassador to Lebanon, Hajriyanto Thohari, said that he anticipated difficulties in the food supply in the coming days following the incident.
Previously it was mentioned that the location of the explosion was only about seven kilometers from the Indonesian Embassy in Beirut. Although it is quite close, the Indonesian Embassy in Beirut is relatively safe and all staff members are also doing well. “No (there was damage). Alhamdulillah (praise be to God),” said Ambassador Hajrianto.
He said about 70% of Lebanese imported goods, including food and other basic necessities, came through the scene of the explosion.
“The main thing is the economic impact because for the next few days [supply] will be disrupted,” Hajriyanto Y Thohari as quoted by BBC Indonesia on Wednesday, August 5.
For this reason, he said, his party had appealed to Indonesians, especially those living in Beirut, to pay attention to food stocks.
He added that the Indonesian Embassy would provide assistance for those who had difficulty accessing food supplies.
Previously, a spokesman for the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Teuku Faizasyah, said there was one Indonesian citizen who was injured but the condition was stable.
Indonesian citizen who was injured in the explosion in Beirut named Ni Nengah Erawati. She was a spa worker at Kimantra, Jal El Dib, who at the time was in Beirut.
“There is one Indonesian citizen who suffered injuries. Indonesian Embassy staff have communicated via video call with the concerned. Her condition is stable, able to talk and walk. She has been treated by hospital doctors and has returned to his apartment in Beirut,” said Faizasyah.
There was also one other Indonesian citizen who survived the explosion, but his residence in Beirut was severely damaged.
Meanwhile, a total of 1,234 Indonesian National Armed Forces (TNI) personnel, Garuda Contingent Task Force members who are members of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) who are on duty in Lebanon are safe from a large explosion in the capital city of Beirut.
“The condition of the task force is safe,” said the Commander of the Indonesian Peace Forces (PMPP) Mission Center, Major General Victor Hasudungan Simatupang, Wednesday, August 5.
“Our members of the Level 2 Hospital Task Force have departed from Naquora to assist in the handling of the explosion,” he said.
According to him, all personnel has been deployed to the city of Beirut to help evacuate victims. “Now glide to Beirut to help evacuate victims of the explosion on UNIFIL’s orders,” he concluded
“KRI Sulthan Hasanuddin 366 (Garuda Indonesia Marine Task Force contingent in UNIFIL) was confirmed safe because it was sailing in Mersin, Turkey,” said Ambassador Hajriyanto.