Armenian News - NEWS.am presents a daily digest of Armenia-related top news as of 05.08.2020:
- More than 100 people have died in Tuesday’s explosion in the port of Beirut, Sky News Arabia television reported, citing the Lebanese Red Cross.
According to the TV channel, the number of injured has exceeded four thousand. City hospitals are overcrowded, and the injured are being sent to the medical centers in the outskirts of Beirut.
Beirut's governor said the blast caused up to $5 billion worth of damage.
It's still unclear what exactly caused the explosion. According to Lebanon's PM, an investigation would focus on an estimated 2,750 metric tons of the explosive ammonium nitrate, stored at a warehouse.
A two-week state of emergency has been declared in the city.
- The number of Armenians killed in the explosion in Beirut is currently six, while over 100 have been injured, said Anna Naghdalyan, MFA spokesperson.
[UPDATE] 11 members of the Armenian community has died in Beirut blast, while 250 were injured, Arevelk reported. There are also missing Armenians.
Among the victims is Nazar Najarian, the secretary-general of Lebanon's Kataeb political party.
A working group has been set up at the MFA to coordinate the provision of targeted assistance to Lebanon, she noted adding that the Armenian embassy in Lebanon is in constant contact with the relevant local authorities to jointly assess the needs of the Lebanese side and the scope of assistance.
In the meantime, according to Gevorg Khachatryan, Deputy Director of Armenia airline, the Lebanon office of Aircompany Armenia has suffered heavy damage following the blast.
- Armenian PM Nikol Pashinyan said Wednesday he had phone talks with Lebanese President Michel Aoun.
The PM offered Armenia's help to the 'brotherly people of Lebanon.'
"The Lebanese government is currently conducting a needs assessment, and as a result of the assessment, the Armenian government will make decisions as needed," Pashinyan added.
- 288 COVID-19 new cases were reported in Armenia on Wednesday.
A total of 39,586 COVID-19 cases were confirmed, of which 30,850 were cured, whereas 770 were fatal—two patients died Tuesday.
The number of Armenia’s COVID-19 patients who died from other diseases has not changed and is 228. Thus, the overall death toll is 998 now.
UPDATE: Armenian deputy PM Tigran Avinyan told a briefing on Wednesday that a state of emergency will be extended for a month.
According to him, restrictions on the entry of foreign citizens into the country, the export of products, as well as on holding public events and meetings may be revised.
- The Armenian Virtual Bridge program has officially launched.
According to the Minister of High Technological Industry of Armenia Hakob Arshakyan, it aims to become a platform connecting and bridging the technological community of Armenia to the world, which will also be the basis for collaboration with the technological community of the Armenian diaspora.
He noted that the Armenian Virtual Bridge is one of the cornerstones of his ministry, in terms of presenting Armenia as a high-tech country, developing the Armenian high-tech community.