Over 100 killed: UK says it's 'premature to speculate' on cause of massive Beirut blast

LONDON – Britain said on Wednesday that it was too early to speculate on the cause of a massive blast that ripped through Beirut, killing at least 100 people.

US President Donald Trump on Tuesday cast the explosion as a possible attack, though Lebanese leaders said that it was likely caused by highly explosive material that had been stored at warehouses in the capital for years.

When asked about speculation about the causes of the blast, British junior education minister Nick Gibb said: "The Lebanese authorities are of course investigating the cause of that tragedy and before we have the results of that inquiry it is premature to speculate."

Gibb also told Sky that Britain was discussing what technical and financial assistance could be offered to Lebanon.

'Over 100 lost their lives'

The huge blast at Beirut port devastated entire neighbourhoods of the city, killing more than 100 people and injuring over 4 000, the Lebanese Red Cross told AFP on Wednesday.

"Until now, over 4 000 people have been injured and over 100 have lost their lives. Our teams are still conducting search and rescue operations in the surrounding areas," a statement said, according to AFP.


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