Beirut Port on Fire Again After Videos Circulate of Huge Blaze One Month Since Explosion

A huge fire has broken out at the port of Beirut just weeks after a devastating blast killed hundreds of people and wounded thousands more.

The Lebanese Army said the fire had broken out in a warehouse storing oil and tires at the duty-free market in the port of the Lebanese capital.

"Operations have begun to extinguish the fire and army helicopters will take part," the military said in a statement on Twitter," the army said in a statement on Twitter.

Videos posted on social media showed thick columns of black smoke billowing into the air above the area largely flattened by the explosion just over a month ago.

حريق كبير في مرفأ #بيروت

— Larissa Aoun (@LarissaAounSky) September 10, 2020

The sky has turned black again in Beirut.

— Liz Sly (@LizSly) September 10, 2020

Leila Molana-Allen, a Middle East correspondent for France 24, tweeted that the local fire department said the blaze is "getting out of control."

The fire sparked alarm among residents still reeling from the accidental explosion that ravaged the city on August 4 as well as sharp criticism of authorities.

"Friends across #Beirut and the world panickedly sending messages telling everyone to get away from the windows and hide," Molana-Allen said.

Human Rights Watch researcher Aya Majzoub added: "Insane fire at the port, causing a panic all across Beirut. We just can't catch a break."

She added: "If the #BeirutBlast didn't kill you, the harmful fumes & smoke will suffocate you. I just cannot fathom how a fire of this scale is possible in the port. Did authorities not ensure all material was safely stored after negligence destroyed half the city??"

Omar Nashabe, another human rights researcher, also expressed outrage.

"Where are we living? This is the scene of the crime a month ago!" he wrote on Twitter. "Where is the judiciary? Where is the state? Where is responsibility?"

شو عم تحرقوا بمرفأ بيروت؟

— Michel Abi Rached | ميشال (@michelarached) September 10, 2020

The August 4 blast occurred after almost 3,000 tons of improperly stored ammonium nitrates ignited at the port of Beirut. More than 180 people died and almost 6,000 others were injured, according to the Associated Press.

Protests erupted in the wake of the blast after it emerged that authorities had been aware of the presence of the huge stockpile, prompting the government to resign.

Smoke rises from a fire which has broken out at the Beirut Port on September 10 in Beirut, Lebanon. Sam Tarling/Getty Images