BEIRUT — Lebanon’s health ministry is reporting a new daily record of 279 new coronavirus cases, bringing the total 5,951. An additional 70 deaths were confirmed on Friday.
The surge comes three days after Beirut was hit by a massive chemical explosion that killed 154 people, wounded thousands and damaged large parts of the city. There have been concerns that the crowding at hospitals overwhelmed with the huge casualties from the blast could lead to a surge in COVID-19 cases in the coming weeks.
Virus cases in Lebanon have been increasing since early July, when the country’s only international airport reopened and a lockdown was eased.
Firas Abiad, head of the city’s Rafik Hariri University Hospital, urged the international community to send medical aid to Lebanon.
He says there is no doubt “our immunity in the country” is less than before the explosion.