Beirut declared a 'disaster city' as blasts death toll up to 73
Beirut was declared a "disaster city" on Tuesday evening as the death toll from two massive explosions that rocked the Lebanese capital's port yesterday rose to 73. More than 3,000 people were also injured in the blasts, Lebanese Health Minister Hamad Hassan said.
After an emergency meeting called by President Michel Aoun, Lebanon's Higher Defense Council declared Beirut a "disaster city" and recommended the cabinet declare a two-week state of emergency. The conferees at the council decided on three days of mourning.
The cause of the explosions was not immediately clear, but Lebanon's internal security chief, Abbas Ibrahim, said the area was housing highly explosive materials. "We cannot pre-empt investigations," he said.