'Catastrophe' in Beirut: Death toll rises, 200,000 homeless as blast leaves city in disarray | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED X-Frame-Options: DENY X-Frame-Options: SAMEORIGIN

'Catastrophe' in Beirut: Death toll rises, 200,000 homeless as blast leaves city in disarray

A huge rescue operation and an international aid effort got underway Wednesday, less than 24 hours after much of Beirut was buried by rubble and choked by smoke in a colossal explosion Tuesday afternoon.

Lebanese health minister Hamad Hasan said 135 people have been killed and 5,000 injured in the explosion. Dozens of people are still missing.

Those figures look set to rise with hospitals overwhelmed and victims still trapped underneath debris.

"There is no word to describe the horror of the catastrophe that occurred in Beirut yesterday," Lebanese President Michel Aoun said during an emergency cabinet meeting on Wednesday, the Lebanese News Agency reported.

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