1st Prize Stories, Spot News, Nominee, World Press Photo of the Year
14 August 2020
A massive explosion, caused by more than 2,750 tons of high-density ammonium nitrate, shook Lebanon’s capital Beirut, on 4 August. The blast damaged or destroyed around 6,000 buildings, killed at least 190 people, injured a further 6,000, and displaced as many as 300,000. The explosive compound, impounded after a shipping dispute, was being stored in an inappropriate climate in a warehouse in the port. Many citizens saw the incident as symptomatic of the ongoing problems the country is facing, namely governmental failure, mishandling and corruption.