Cairo: Saudi Arabia has launched an airlift of medical aid to Lebanon after a massive explosion in Beirut left more than 100 dead and thousands injured.
The state King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSRelief) started an airlift to Lebanon to offer relief aid to the victims of Tuesday’s blast, the Saudi news Agency SPA reported Friday.
Two planes loaded with over 120 tonnes of medical and food supplies as well as tents Friday left the King Khaled International Airport in Riyadh for Beirut.
The aid is escorted by a team from the centre to oversee distribution, according to the report.
KSRelief Supervisor-General Dr Abdullah Al Rabeeah said the relief airlift was launched upon directives of King Salman Bin Abudulaziz to offer emergency medical and humanitarian assistance to the Lebanese people to support them in overcoming the consequences of the blast at the Port of Beirut.
“This aid highlights the kingdom’s pivotal role at the world level in offering aid to those in need wherever they are with all impartiality,” he added in a press statement.
At least 145 people were killed and 5,000 others were injured in the blast that devastated large parts of Beirut, according to Lebanese media.
The explosion was blamed on 2,700 metric tonnes of ammonium nitrate reportedly stored in the port without safety measures.
Lebanon, roiled by an acute economic crisis, has appealed for international help to grapple with the aftermath.