Flight arrives in Abu Dhabi carrying Lebanon's Akkar explosion victims

Injured will be treated at specialist hospitals in the UAE

A medical evacuation flight arrived at Abu Dhabi International Airport today, carrying victims of the Akkar petrol tanker explosion in northern Lebanon this week.

The injured will be treated at specialist hospitals as part of the close relationship between the Emirati and Lebanese people.

Health authorities have started admitting the injured to hospitals for immediate treatment and rehabilitation, where they will receive the highest quality of care.

The UAE embassy in Lebanon earlier communicated with authorities to send the injured as soon as possible.

On Sunday, the oil tanker explosion killed at least 28 people and injured 79 in the impoverished northern Lebanese governorate of Akkar.

The explosion happened at a time of widespread fuel shortages, when much of the country is without electricity and long queues form at petrol stations.

The Lebanese Army has opened an investigation into the incident and President Michel Aoun summoned the Supreme Defence Council to discuss a response.

"At around 2am on Sunday, a fuel tanker that had been seized earlier by the army to distribute to the people exploded at an open area used for storing crushed stones in the village of Tleil in Akkar, leaving casualties among civilians and military personnel," the army said on its website.

A mob gathered at the man's home, breaking windows then setting fire to it. He is believed to have owned the fuel that exploded.

Akkar governorate, on the border with Syria, is one of the poorest areas of Lebanon.

The explosion heaped more misery on a country struck by an economic crisis and severe fuel shortages that have crippled hospitals and caused power cuts that last up to 22 hours a day.

Updated: August 20th 2021, 4:36 AM