Lebanon (MNN) — Lebanon’s prime minister and three former ministers have been charged in connection with the August 4th Beirut explosion. Prosecutors have detained thirty port officials in the case as well.
The explosion decimated Beirut’s port and damaged buildings throughout the city, as 2,750 tones of Ammonium Nitrate ignited during a warehouse fire. Port officials stored the chemicals in the port for years without proper safety measures.
Pierre Houssney of Horizons International says, “Hassan Diab, the Prime Minister, he’s really somebody that came in pretty recently. And it’s kind of silly to give him the responsibility for really what the power brokers have done over the past seven years: having all these explosives in the port. So it’s really not his fault at all. And basically, it looks like they’re trying to put up the weakest scapegoat that they can to themselves escape scrutiny.”
Investigations about the explosion have dragged on for months with no real progress until now. The people of Lebanon have voiced their discontent over the process.
The explosion accelerated the economic troubles in Lebanon. Over half of Lebanese now live below the poverty line. Houssney says the political elite has been stealing the country’s money for themselves. “Even the biggest humanitarian aid organizations, including the UN, don’t have the capacity to sustain [the people of Lebanon]. To me, all these headlines and politics are not the really significant thing. To me, the significance is the human suffering that’s going on right now because of all this corruption and the stealing of all these billions of dollars. That money really should, I think, in God’s eyes, be used to let these people live and prosper.”
Jesus knows the depth of human suffering, and he has experienced the hopelessness many in Lebanon feel right now. As Horizons International works to provide help and hope, pray many would see Jesus’ love through their work.
The header photo shows the port of Beirut after the August 4th blast. (Photo courtesy of Horizons International)