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Beirut blast - 1 year on

“In the courtyard, a man was lying on his back in a pool of blood, holding his left arm up in the air, blood shooting from where his sliced off fingers used to be” – Mike Azar

"I saw people in pieces. I saw people mutilated while I was searching for my husband." - Samia Doughan

Today, a year has passed since the Beirut port explosion on 4th August; one of the world’s biggest-ever, non-nuclear explosions. Several tons of ammonium nitrate stored at the site for 6 years, detonated, killing over 200 people, injuring 6,000 and leaving some 300,000 homes damaged or destroyed.

"In the days after the explosion, I felt this heaviness in me. I realized that I was in mourning. Beirut is my city, and the areas hit by the explosion; I grew up there, like the clinic where I was born, my grandparents’ home, school, family church, Saturday morning ballet classes, my friends’ homes, my favorite bar. I think what hurts most for Lebanese people is that the putrid stench of the leaders’ corruption is so deep that it looks like there will never be accountability or justice for what happened.” Says dr. Thia Sagherian-Dickey, Social Psychologist based in the Netherlands.

Lebanon was already experiencing its worst economic & political crisis in decades. Critics have said the political leadership obstructed the judicial investigation concerning the blast. Since then, living conditions deteriorated, forcing many people out of Lebanon, and 1/3rd of Lebanese children go to bed hungry. Many Lebanese are surviving by relying on their families living abroad to send money or bring them basic items like medicines, hygiene products, and diapers. People with chronic diseases such as diabetes or heart conditions are struggling to get their treatment, increasing the likelihood of health complications and death. The Lebanese citizens are angry.

“All we have been offered is empty slogans and fake empathy.

How can we ever know peace before justice is done.”

We stand in #solidarity with our Lebanese friends & will always have #beirutinourhearts ❤️

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