Lebanon, Interpol and Beirut call for detention of two Russians after explosion | Middle East

Lebanon, Interpol and Beirut call for detention of two Russians after explosion |  Middle East

Interpol asked for detention of captains and shipowners who carried thousands of tons of ammonium nitrate seven years ago.

More than 200 people died and thousands were injured in the August explosion at the port of Beirut. (NNA) said.

About 2,700 tons of ammonium nitrate stored in the port of Beirut exploded on August 4, killing 193 people, injuring about 6,500 people, and nearly 300,000 homeless.

On Thursday, Judge Fadi Sawwan referred the case to state prosecutors who asked Interpol to detain two Russian citizens.

The NNA did not name the two, but Boris Prokoshev was the captain who sailed MV Rhosus from Turkey to Beirut in 2013. Russian businessman Igor Grechushkin, living on the island of Cyprus in the Mediterranean, bought a cargo ship in Cyprus in 2012. Businessman Charalambos Manoli.

Grechushkin was interrogated by the police in August at the request of Interpol’s Lebanese office.

More than 24 people (mostly port and customs officials) have been detained since the explosion, considered one of the largest non-nuclear explosions ever recorded.

Ammonium nitrate arrived in Lebanon in September 2013 by a Russian-owned cargo ship on the flag of Moldova. According to information from ship tracking site Fleetmon, Rhosus was heading from Georgia to Mozambique.

The cargo was then unloaded and placed in hangar 12 at the port of Beirut, a large gray structure facing the country’s main north-south highway at the main gate of the capital.

Ammonium nitrate remained in the warehouse until it exploded. According to official Lebanese documents, Rossus left the port in February 2018 and did not sink.

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The explosion further shook the country in its worst crisis since the 1975-1990 civil war.

The economy is collapsing with decades of state waste, corruption and rising debt. Banks froze people from savings, and currencies crashed.

Meanwhile, Lebanon is struggling to cope with the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Schools have not yet resumed after a surge in cases, which has increased to more than 35,000 infections, including at least 340 deaths since February 9th.

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