Beirut blasts: Belgium’s B-FAST emergency aid team flown in on Friday
Share article:
Share article:

Beirut blasts: Belgium’s B-FAST emergency aid team flown in on Friday

Credit: OyeWaleed1/Twitter

Belgium will deploy a B-fast military team to Beirut to provide emergency assistance in the recovery efforts after two devastating explosions ripped through the city’s port area this week.

The Belgian First Aid and Support (B-Fast) team, which is specialised in providing emergency disaster aid, is set to take off at around 8:00 PM from Belgium, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

Three days after two massive blasts inside a port warehouse ravaged the waterfront and nearby neighbourhoods, officials said the death toll stood at least 157 people, with around 5,000 more injured.

Related News:


On Wednesday, Belgium’s Foreign Affairs Ministry said that two Belgian nationals had been confirmed dead in the blasts and that two staffers of the Belgian embassy, located near the site of the blasts, had also been injured.

Footage from the explosions captured from different angles streamed onto social media from Tuesday evening, with novel images still emerging days after the events.

The blasts caused widespread devastation in the waterfront area, causing the collapse of several buildings and leaving hundreds of thousands without a home, Beirut Governor Marwan Abboud said.

Abboud called the explosions a “national catastrophe,” breaking into tears during an interview conducted as he took in the damage in the immediate aftermath of the blasts.

The explosions occurred inside a warehouse where the government had stored 2,750 tons of highly explosive ammonium nitrate, with public anger mounting following reports that officials failed to relocate it despite being made aware of the risks.

As news of the explosions hit global headlines, Belgian Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès offered public support to Lebanon, saying Belgium “stood by Beirut in the aftermath of this tragedy.”

Belgium also offered to fly humanitarian help into Beirut and offered to support Lebanese officials by sending in a victim identification team or medical help.

The burnt unit in the military hospital in Neder-Over-Heembeek, in the north of Brussels, also said it could welcome and treat victims who were burnt in the blasts, RTBF reports.

On Thursday, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said that the EU would provide €33 million in emergency assistance to Lebanon, as well as dispatch emergency relief teams.

Gabriela Galindo
The Brussels Times

Latest news

Belgium main EU importer of kangaroo meat after cruel hunting
A recent Australian report discloses cruel hunting of kangaroo whose meat and skins are exported to among others EU member states. The report, ...
EU recognises UK Covid pass as ‘equivalent’ to EU Digital Covid Certificate
On Thursday, the European Commission adopted two new decisions certifying that the Covid-19 passes issued by the United Kingdom and Armenia are ...
Antwerp’s first garden street officially opens this weekend
Antwerp's very first "Garden Street" – which replaces tarmac roads with green spaces – will officially open this weekend. Situated on Lange ...
Belgium relaxes testing rules for UK travellers
At the Consultative Committee meeting on Tuesday, the Belgian authorities decided to relax the testing policy for travellers entering the country ...
Far-right MP calls for resistance against CST and face masks
Companies in Flanders should disobey the newly announced measures, according to Flemish group leader of the far-right Vlaams Belang party, Chris ...
How a clever cycling network brings bikers to Flanders
Belgium has always had a special relationship with cycling, but a clever Flemish system of route nodes makes it easier than ever. As Daniela De ...
Brexit fishing conflict escalates: France to adopt retaliatory measures
The conflict between France and the UK over fishing licences post-Brexit continues to escalate. France is set to adopt retaliatory measures ...
Mandatory from Monday: the new rules for Belgium’s Covid Safe Ticket
From Monday 1 November, presenting the Covid Safe Ticket (CST) will become mandatory in all hospitality businesses and fitness centres throughout ...
Car falls off opening bridge in Leuven, parents and child slightly injured
On Wednesday afternoon, a young family experienced the fright of their lives in Leuven when the bridge across the Vaartkom that they were driving on ...
Brussels and Wallonia once again dark red on European travel map
The Brussels-Capital Region and Wallonia have turned dark red in the latest update to the travel map by the European Centre for Disease Prevention ...
Belgium in Brief: What Now?
We've had the meeting, we know the results, and now the time has come to see what happens next. So I find myself wondering a simple question: ...
Floating solar farm to be built along Ostend coast next year
Dutch company Oceans of Energy has announced plans to construct a solar farm off the coast of Ostend next year that should eventually provide enough ...