Iran sympathizes with Lebanon over blast, offers help
A host of Iranian ministries and senior officials have expressed solidarity with Lebanon after a huge blast rocked Beirut on Tuesday evening, expressing readiness to help the Lebanese government and people to deal with the tragedy.
According toTasnim news agency, in a statement on Tuesday night, the spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Iran expressed sympathy with Lebanon and offered his condolences to the Arab country over the deaths and injuries in the deadly explosion in Beirut.
Seyyd Abbas Mousavi said Iran is monitoring the news of the tragic incident with concern.
He also voiced Iran ’s readiness to help the “Lebanese brothers and sisters” in the current tough conditions.
In separate messages to their Lebanese counterparts, Iran’s Health Minister Sa'eed Namaki and Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli said Iran is prepared to provide Lebanon with whatever assistance and relief aid necessary after the explosion.
In a post on his Twitter account, Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani offered his condolences to the Lebanese government and nation on the deaths and injuries in the explosion, stressing that the Islamic Republic is standing by Lebanon.
In remarks at the beginning of a Wednesday session of the legislature, Iranian Parliament Speaker Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf called on the Iranian Red Crescent Society and other rescue and relief organizations to provide immediate help for Lebanon.
Lebanese President Michel Aoun called for an emergency cabinet meeting on Wednesday and said a two-week state of emergency should be declared following the massive explosion in Beirut that killed at least 78 people and injured 4,000 others.
The explosion on Tuesday sent shockwaves across the city, causing widespread damage even on the outskirts of the capital.
Officials said they expected the death toll to rise further as emergency workers dug through rubble to rescue people and remove the dead.
The cause of the explosion was not immediately clear. Officials linked the blast to some 2,750 tons of confiscated ammonium nitrate that were being stored in a warehouse at the port for six years.
Aoun assembled the country's High Defense Council following the explosion.