Ramzi Merhej had just finished working from home in Berlin on August 4 and was about to go out to play basketball when he checked his Facebook page and saw that a friend was live-streaming from Beirut. “This friend lives in Mar Mikhael, right next to the port,” he said. “She was live on her phone. I saw that her hands were full of blood. I saw her destroyed building. She screamed and then the connection went dead.” Merhej has lived in Germany since 2015, but all of is family is in Lebanon. Some of his relatives are in the Chouf Mountains, but most live in the center of Beirut. As social media filled with pictures and videos of the explosion and the mushroom cloud that it caused, he made frantic calls to find out if his family was OK. After 30 minutes of panic, he found out that his parents and sister were safe. Later, he learned that a friend of his who worked near the port had died. The death toll is now more than 200 people. A friend’s father is still missing. The government submitted its resignation after days of protests followed the explosion Merhej said he… Read full this story
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