All links to destroyed warehouse pursued as part of Lebanon probe

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Beirut, Aug. 12, 2020 A probe into the devastating Beirut port blast will include every official, employee and minister who knew about the dangerous material which was stored in the facility, judicial and security sources told dpa.

“The investigation will include everyone who had an authority over this file and was aware of the presence of these materials in the port,” a security source said.

On Aug. 4, a blast ripped through warehouse number 12, which housed 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate. It killed at least 171 people, wounded 6,000 and displaced some 300,000 people.

On Wednesday several port officials were interrogated by the Lebanese prosecutor over the blast, a judicial source said.

State Prosecutor Ghassan Oueidat has interrogated some of the top Beirut officials who were arrested on Friday, the source said without giving further details.

“The prosecutor is keen on accelerating the interrogation as soon as the technical teams on the ground finish their job,” the source who requested anonymity said.

On Friday, a Beirut judge has ordered the detention of the director of the Lebanese customs and a port director.

Acting state commissioner to the military court, Fadi Akiki, said 18 people had been interrogated so far.

“Most of the arrested are still in custody,” the security source said.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas became the latest top European official to visit the devastated area on Wednesday.

“It is something else to see with your own eyes what happened here a few days ago in Beirut, the level of devastation and destruction is almost unimaginable for people living in Germany,” he said.

“Now it is a matter of continuing to help ensure that the destruction can be re-built piece by piece

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