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Two Missing in Six-Storey Factory Collapse in Lebanon - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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BEIRUT (AFP) – A six-storey aluminum factory collapsed on Thursday in a northern suburb of Beirut, trapping three people under the rubble, two of whom remain missing, a civil defence official said.

“The building crumbled to the ground at 6:15 am (0315 GMT) in an industrial area in Zouk Mosbeh,” some 15 kilometres (nine miles) north of the capital, Brigadier General Darwish Hobeika told AFP.

“We have found a 35-year-old Lebanese man who was trapped in the building,” he said. “Our team has maintained communication with him and we expect him to be pulled from the rubble shortly.”

Hobeika, who is overseeing the rescue efforts, said civil defence forces were still looking for two Indian labourers who were in the factory when all six storeys suddenly caved in, adding that they might be trapped in the basement.

He did not rule out shoddy construction as a possible reason for the collapse but said officials would wait until the investigation was complete before announcing the cause.

“We are also concerned about the surrounding buildings, which are all factories and are subject to continuous shaking and vibrations,” Hobeika said.

“If there is ever an earthquake in the area, not one building would be left standing.”

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

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