Generals mistake Beirut blast for attack — Trump
President Donald Trump has said that the massive explosion that rocked Beirut on Tuesday August 4, 2020, was a “terrible attack” likely caused by a bomb, according to US military generals.
Trump said this during a press briefing at the White House that he met some of the US military generals who told him they “seem to feel” the Tuesday explosion in Beirut, which killed dozens and wounded thousands, was a bomb blast.
Reporters asked him why he called it an attack and not an accident, especially since Lebanese officials say they have not determined the cause of the explosion.
“It would seem like it based on the explosion. I met with some of our great generals and they just seem to feel that it was.
“This was not some kind of a manufacturing explosion type of an event. They seem to think it was an attack. It was a bomb of some kind, yes,” he said in response to the question.
Trump offered condolences to the explosion victims, and also promised that US would be ready to assist Lebanon.
The explosion flattened much of a port and damaged buildings across the capitol sending a giant mushroom cloud into the sky.
Reports said at least 70 people died from the explosion, with some bodies trapped in the rubble, while more than 3,000 other people were severely injured.
Officials have yet to make any statements about the cause of the blast, but initial reports suggested a detonated fire from the port warehouse.
Chief of Lebanese general security, Abbas Ibrahim said the blast could be linked to highly explosive material that was confiscated from a ship some time ago and stored at the seaport.
Local television channel LBC said the material was ammonium nitrate.
Eyewitnesses said they saw a strange, orange-like cloud that which normally appears when toxic nitrogen dioxide gas is released after an explosion involving nitrates.