The United Nations said it is “actively assisting” in the response to the horrific explosions that ripped through the port area of Beirut, as Secretary-General Antonio Guterres expressed his deepest condolences to the families of the victims and to the Lebanese people.
“The Secretary-General expresses his deepest condolences to the families of the victims, as well as to the people and Government of Lebanon, following the horrific explosions in Beirut,” a statement from a UN spokesperson said.
Guterres wishes a speedy recovery to the injured, including several United Nations personnel working in Lebanon.
“The United Nations remains committed to supporting Lebanon at this difficult time, and is actively assisting in the response to this incident,” the statement added.
The UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) said one of the UNIFIL ships of the Maritime Task Force docked in the port was damaged, leaving some UNIFIL naval peacekeepers injured – some of them seriously.
UNIFIL said it was transporting the injured peacekeepers to the nearest hospitals for medical treatment and is currently assessing the situation, including the scale of the impact on UNIFIL personnel.
UNIFIL Head of Mission and Force Commander Major General Del Col said, “We are with the people and the Government of Lebanon during this difficult time and stand ready to help and provide any assistance and support.”
More than 70 people were dead and nearly 3,000 injured in the explosion, which sent shockwaves across the bustling city of Beirut, bursting out windows and shaking buildings.
Separately, Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, the President of the UN General Assembly, also extended his deepest condolences to the families who lost loved ones in the explosion in Beirut and wished a speedy recovery for the injured.
Muhammad-Bande “would like to reiterate his solidarity with Lebanon during this time,” said the Assembly President’s Spokesperson.