Lebanon’s road to recovery

Victoria Gomez, News Writer

On August 4, 2020 in Beirut, as fuel, food and medicine. With Lebanon, a port blast shook the country in ways no one could imagine. The Rhosus, a Russian owned ship headed for Mozambique, experienced technical issues and took refuge at the Beirut port in September of 2017. This ship contained around 2,759 tons of ammonium nitrate, which is sometimes used to fertilize soil or aid with mining explosions. Government officials were notified multiple times about this potentially dangerous chemical sitting only a few feet away from the country’s capital. Even after the company notified the government more than 10 times, there was no action taken. The result of this blast cost many lives, with 218 dead, 7,000 wounded and 300,000 people displaced. All of these people were looking for medical assistance but the blast caused over half of Beirut’s healthcare facilities to be dysfunctional. What happens to those who were displaced? How does a city come back from this? Previous to this, the Diab government was in charge of Lebanon. They decided to step down from that position after the explosion. This government failed to accomplish anything they had promised to do with foreign countries’ aid. Due to this history, Lebanon is now struggling to get money from outside countries who are calling Lebanon dysfunctional and corrupt, demanding more transparency as to where exactly their money is going. The funds have dried up and now the country is having trouble importing basic necessities, such less fuel, there are major electricity shortages affecting lights in homes and they have no resources to fix it.This is only one of the many problems that Lebanese people deal with on a daily basis. The lack of these resources has caused inflation and the economy has been crumbling, making Lebanon’s currency lose 90 percent of its value since the port blast. “We will face big difficulties and we will work on devising the possible solutions,” President of Lebanon, Michel Aoun, said. Although this happened over a year ago, the new government system has just been established. The government met with France on September 10 and the billion dollar tycoon, Najib Mitaki, has decided to take the title of Prime Minister and lead the country. “The situation is very hard and all of us know it… But it is not impossible if we all stand together as Lebanese,” Mitaki said. With the new Prime Minister taking the reins, only time will tell on how well he will deliver on his promises.