President Donald Trump opened Tuesday’s coronavirus press briefing by reacting to the deadly explosion that took place earlier in the day in Beirut, Lebanon, but he went on to directly undercut the Lebanese government’s claim regarding the explosion’s origin.
Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab said that the explosion, which killed at least 50 individuals, was caused by nearly 3,000 tons of unsecured ammonium nitrate, but Trump said the explosion looked like a “terrible attack.” (RELATED: More Than 50 People Dead In Beirut, Over 2,500 Injured In Explosion)
BREAKING: Lebanese Prime Minister says #Beirut explosions caused by an estimated 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate left unsecured for 6 years in a warehouse. He vows to punish officials responsible. 50+ dead, 3,000 injured, hospitals overwhelmed.
— Bill Neely (@BillNeelyNBC) August 4, 2020
Following his opening remarks, a reporter asked Trump to clarify his comments framing the explosion as an “attack,” given the explanation given by the Lebanese government.
“Well, it would seem like it, based on the explosion,” Trump stated.
He added that he “met with some of our great generals and they seem to feel it was.”
“This was not some kind of a manufacturing explosion type of event,” POTUS continued. “This was — seems to be according to them, they would know better than I would, they seem to think it was an attack, it was a bomb of some kind.”
This is a developing story and will be updated as new information becomes available.