At least 100 people were killed and 4,000 people were injured in the massive explosion which shook Beirut Tuesday.
Initial reports from Lebanon suggested that the explosion was an accident at a fireworks factory. However, officials later stated that the blast was cuased by highly explosive materials which had been seized from a ship and stored at the site for years.
Director-General of Lebanon Public Security Abbas Ibrahim said: “The storage area contained highly explosive materials confiscated years ago. To discuss fireworks is laughable.”
The explosive material allegedly contained sodium nitrate.
The explosion was so massive that its shockwave shattered windows miles away from the blast.
Beirut City Governor Marwan Aboud broke down in tears while describing the damage during a press briefing.
"Beirut is a disaster city and the scale of the damage is enormous," Aboud said, calling the blast "a national disaster akin to Hiroshima."