Morrison expresses nation’s sorrow over Beirut explosion
(See Translation in Arabic section)
Canberra: Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the nation’s heart goes out to Lebanon following the deadly explosion in Beirut on Wednesday. Speaking on the Today Show on Channel 9, Mr Morrison said: “There’s about 20,000 Australians at any one time who are in Lebanon. It's my deep regret to inform you that one Australian has been killed in this horrific blast.
“Our Embassy in Beirut has been impacted significantly and, but I can report all our staff are OK. Our hearts really go out to our Lebanese Australian community. I know there’ll be many prayers in the Maronite churches and the mosques in Australia. But again, given the COVID restrictions, I would urge the appropriate response.”
Mr Morrison also spoke on Sunrise Show on Channel 7, saying he had receiving overnight briefings on the disaster. “There is such a large Lebanese Australian community here and they will be worried about loved ones,” he said. The Prime Minister repeated that the Embassy had been “significantly impacted” by the explosion but fortunately staff had only received “some cuts and scratches.”
The PM also spoke about the explosion on the Ray Hadley Morning Show on 2GB. He said there had been at least 63 deaths and about 3000 injuries. “It’s just heartbreaking,” he said. “I mean there has been a lot of heartbreaking news lately … 2020 has been quite a shocker.”
People seeking information are advised to contact the Department of Foreign Affairs on 02 6261 3305.