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Incredible images capture July’s ‘buck moon’ lighting up the sky above New York

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incredible images capture julys buck moon lighting up the sky above new york

Revelers celebrating July 4 in New York were wowed by a dazzling ‘buck moon’ rising above the Empire State building.

Across the US the supermoon, named after the season when young male deer grow their antlers, took on an orange hue as it hung low in the late evening skies.

It was also a lunar eclipse of sorts, with half the sun’s light blocked out – making for these eerie and spectacular images.

The moon, which appears annually at the beginning of summer, is often also called the ‘thunder moon’ because of the frequency of thunder storms during the hot, dry summer months.

July’s eclipse started at 11.08pm in the US (Eastern Time) and ended Sunday at 1.53am – but it was only 35 per cent visible, according to Space.com.   

A full lunar eclipse can turn the moon red but during this penumbral eclipse only the outer shadow of the Earth, known as the penumbra, fell onto the face of the moon. It caused only a slight darkening.  

The buck moon rises behind Lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5, 2020 as seen from Kearny, New Jersey

The buck moon rises behind Lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5, 2020 as seen from Kearny, New Jersey

The buck moon rises behind Lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5, 2020 as seen from Kearny, New Jersey

The moon, beginning to wane, rises beyond a downtown office building Sunday, July 5, in Kansas City, Mo. The penumbral lunar eclipse was the third of four

The moon, beginning to wane, rises beyond a downtown office building Sunday, July 5, in Kansas City, Mo. The penumbral lunar eclipse was the third of four

The moon, beginning to wane, rises beyond a downtown office building Sunday, July 5, in Kansas City, Mo. The penumbral lunar eclipse was the third of four

A plane flies across the moon as the orange-hued satellite is seen over Lower Manhattan in New York City, United States on July 5

A plane flies across the moon as the orange-hued satellite is seen over Lower Manhattan in New York City, United States on July 5

A plane flies across the moon as the orange-hued satellite is seen over Lower Manhattan in New York City, United States on July 5

Revelers look out over Wisconsin Point as fireworks were shot off and a waxing gibbous moon rose over the horizon, seen from Superior, Wis., Saturday, July 4

Revelers look out over Wisconsin Point as fireworks were shot off and a waxing gibbous moon rose over the horizon, seen from Superior, Wis., Saturday, July 4

Revelers look out over Wisconsin Point as fireworks were shot off and a waxing gibbous moon rose over the horizon, seen from Superior, Wis., Saturday, July 4

Pictured: A Fourth of July fireworks display lighting up the sky in Stillwell, Kanas, as the full moon rises in the distance. The eclipse 11:08 pm in the US and in early hours of the next morning in the UK

Pictured: A Fourth of July fireworks display lighting up the sky in Stillwell, Kanas, as the full moon rises in the distance. The eclipse 11:08 pm in the US and in early hours of the next morning in the UK

Pictured: A Fourth of July fireworks display lighting up the sky in Stillwell, Kanas, as the full moon rises in the distance. The eclipse 11:08 pm in the US and in early hours of the next morning in the UK

Pictured: The moon passing by the Empire State Building before Macy's Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular in New York City

Pictured: The moon passing by the Empire State Building before Macy's Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular in New York City

Pictured: The moon passing by the Empire State Building before Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular in New York City

Pictured: Full moon seen between the clouds over Lower Manhattan in New York City on July 5. A penumbral lunar eclipse happens only when the outer shadow of the earth is on the face of the moon

Pictured: Full moon seen between the clouds over Lower Manhattan in New York City on July 5. A penumbral lunar eclipse happens only when the outer shadow of the earth is on the face of the moon

Pictured: Full moon seen between the clouds over Lower Manhattan in New York City on July 5. A penumbral lunar eclipse happens only when the outer shadow of the earth is on the face of the moon

Pictured: The moon seen over Lower Manhattan in New York City on July 5, 202. A full eclipse happens when the sun, the moon and Earth are exactly aligned

Pictured: The moon seen over Lower Manhattan in New York City on July 5, 202. A full eclipse happens when the sun, the moon and Earth are exactly aligned

Pictured: The moon seen over Lower Manhattan in New York City on July 5, 202. A full eclipse happens when the sun, the moon and Earth are exactly aligned

Pictured: A triangle of Saturn, the moon and Jupiter rise over One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5, 2020 as seen from Jersey City, New Jersey

Pictured: A triangle of Saturn, the moon and Jupiter rise over One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5, 2020 as seen from Jersey City, New Jersey

Pictured: A triangle of Saturn, the moon and Jupiter rise over One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5, 2020 as seen from Jersey City, New Jersey

Pictured: The buck moon rises behind Lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5, 2020 as seen from Kearny, New Jersey

Pictured: The buck moon rises behind Lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5, 2020 as seen from Kearny, New Jersey

Pictured: The buck moon rises behind Lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5, 2020 as seen from Kearny, New Jersey

Pictured: The buck moon rises behind Lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5. July's full moon is called a 'buck moon' because it comes at the beginning of Summer when male deer grow their new antlers

Pictured: The buck moon rises behind Lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5. July's full moon is called a 'buck moon' because it comes at the beginning of Summer when male deer grow their new antlers

Pictured: The buck moon rises behind Lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center in New York City on July 5. July’s full moon is called a ‘buck moon’ because it comes at the beginning of Summer when male deer grow their new antlers

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YouTube star Jake Paul’s LA home raided by FBI after big party

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youtube star jake pauls la home raided by fbi after big party

Heavily-armed FBI agents have descended on Jake Paul’s Los Angeles home after serving the YouTube star with a search warrant.

At least 20 federal agents dressed in tactical gear arrived at the $6.9million Calabasas property early Wednesday morning to carry out a raid, TMZ reported. 

Video footage taken at the scene showed a number of FBI units riding in on a procession of military vehicles including an armored truck, on the 23500 block of Parksouth Street. 

Several U.S. government marked cars were also spotted in the vicinity during the mystery operation.

It is unknown what authorities were searching for or if the YouTube personality was at the property at the time of the raid. 

Sources told the LA Times a SWAT team was deployed to gain entry into the viral star’s house. 

Agents were reported to have searched the 15,000 square-foot home for about an hour and half, but details on what was seized from the property were not released. 

Scroll down for video 

Jake Paul's Calabasas home was searched by FBI agents early Wednesday morning. Above, two agents clad in tactical gear are seen at the gates of the mansion during the operation

Jake Paul's Calabasas home was searched by FBI agents early Wednesday morning. Above, two agents clad in tactical gear are seen at the gates of the mansion during the operation

Jake Paul’s Calabasas home was searched by FBI agents early Wednesday morning. Above, two agents clad in tactical gear are seen at the gates of the mansion during the operation

Several federal agents dressed in tactical gear arrived in armored vehicles after serving the YouTube star with a search warrant

Several federal agents dressed in tactical gear arrived in armored vehicles after serving the YouTube star with a search warrant

Several federal agents dressed in tactical gear arrived in armored vehicles after serving the YouTube star with a search warrant 

At least 20 federal agents hanging off military trucks were seen on the 23500 block of Parksouth Street during the mystery operation

At least 20 federal agents hanging off military trucks were seen on the 23500 block of Parksouth Street during the mystery operation

At least 20 federal agents hanging off military trucks were seen on the 23500 block of Parksouth Street during the mystery operation

The FBI refused to comment on the nature of the search since the warrant has been sealed by a judge. Pictured: FBI units cling on to government vehicles while leaving Paul's property

The FBI refused to comment on the nature of the search since the warrant has been sealed by a judge. Pictured: FBI units cling on to government vehicles while leaving Paul's property

The FBI refused to comment on the nature of the search since the warrant has been sealed by a judge. Pictured: FBI units cling on to government vehicles while leaving Paul’s property

The raid was reported to have lasted an hour and half. It is unknown what was seized from the house

The raid was reported to have lasted an hour and half. It is unknown what was seized from the house

The raid was reported to have lasted an hour and half. It is unknown what was seized from the house 

Jake Paul, 23, rose to fame alongside his brother Logan Paul, 25, on now defunct-video app Vine before transitioning to YouTube where he uploads reckless and adventurous videos

Jake Paul, 23, rose to fame alongside his brother Logan Paul, 25, on now defunct-video app Vine before transitioning to YouTube where he uploads reckless and adventurous videos

 Jake Paul, 23, rose to fame alongside his brother Logan Paul, 25, on now defunct-video app Vine before transitioning to YouTube where he uploads reckless and adventurous videos 

Authorities said they did not plan to make any arrests in Wednesday’s raid, but refused to comment on the nature of the search since the warrant has been sealed by a judge. 

‘The FBI is executing a federal search warrant at a residence in Calabasas in connection with an ongoing investigation,’ the bureau told ABC7. 

‘The affidavit in support of the search warrant is sealed and we are, therefore, prohibited from commenting as to the nature of the investigation.’  

DailyMail.com has contacted Paul’s reps for comment.  

Paul, 23, who rose to fame alongside his brother Logan Paul, 25, on now defunct-video app Vine before transitioning to YouTube, has been embroiled in a number of controversies in recent years, as well as run-ins with the law.

In June, Paul was charged with two misdemeanors – criminal trespass and unlawful assembly – after video footage surfaced of him at an Arizona mall while it was being looted.

Police offered an official statement to the public saying they were sent ‘hundreds of tips’ claiming Paul was ‘a participant in the riot.’

Paul later tried to distance himself from the situation in a statement saying he was in no way involved in any looting or vandalism. 

The FBI said no arrests were planned in Wednesday's search but it is unclear as to why the operation required heavily armed units

The FBI said no arrests were planned in Wednesday's search but it is unclear as to why the operation required heavily armed units

The FBI said no arrests were planned in Wednesday’s search but it is unclear as to why the operation required heavily armed units 

Paul was nowhere to be seen during the FBI raid on Wednesday

Paul was nowhere to be seen during the FBI raid on Wednesday

Paul was nowhere to be seen during the FBI raid on Wednesday

Several military vehicles were seen departing the mansion following the mystery operation

Several military vehicles were seen departing the mansion following the mystery operation

Several military vehicles were seen departing the mansion following the mystery operation 

Paul purchased the 15,000 square-ft mansion in Calabasas for a hefty $6.925million when he was 20 years old in 2017

Paul purchased the 15,000 square-ft mansion in Calabasas for a hefty $6.925million when he was 20 years old in 2017

Paul purchased the 15,000 square-ft mansion in Calabasas for a hefty $6.925million when he was 20 years old in 2017

Paul moved into the neighborhood in 2017 after his previous home in Beverly Grove had become the subject of noise complaints

Paul moved into the neighborhood in 2017 after his previous home in Beverly Grove had become the subject of noise complaints

 Paul moved into the neighborhood in 2017 after his previous home in Beverly Grove had become the subject of noise complaints

The influencer also drew backlash last month for blatantly flouting social distancing guidelines as COVID-19 cases spiked in California, by throwing a massive party at the mansion.  

Calabasas mayor Alicia Weintraub expressed ‘outrage’ over the ‘outrageous gathering’ in which dozens of people without masks drank and danced.  

Paul later indicated to Insider last week that he would continue to do what he wants.

Videos emerged on social media shortly after the party, where revelers showed no concern for social distancing or wearing protective masks. 

People were seen drinking, playing beer pong, and swinging off a construction backhoe at the gathering. 

Revelers were both indoors and outdoors, crowded closely together without a mask in sight. 

What pandemic? The 23-year-old faced backlash after throwing a wild party at his Calabasas mansion on July 14

What pandemic? The 23-year-old faced backlash after throwing a wild party at his Calabasas mansion on July 14

What pandemic? The 23-year-old faced backlash after throwing a wild party at his Calabasas mansion on July 14 

A man who appears to be Paul is seen in this video where a crowd of people surround a table filled with red solo cups and drinks

A man who appears to be Paul is seen in this video where a crowd of people surround a table filled with red solo cups and drinks

Several videos of the festivities were uploaded to social media

Several videos of the festivities were uploaded to social media

Party time! A man who appears to be Paul is seen in this video where a crowd of people surround a table filled with red solo cups and drinks

Calabasas mayor Alicia Weintraub was left outraged after learning of the party and says she’s looking into ‘all options’ for penalties for Paul. 

Paul told Insider that he spoke to the mayor and ‘everything is cool,’ though he didn’t elaborate on what she said.

The mayor, meanwhile, said she didn’t speak to Paul at all, and only a representative for the the YouTuber. She said that possible fines would be issues in the future and the sheriff’s department would intervene. 

But Paul didn’t say that would put an end to his wild bashes, and insisted that it wasn’t clear to him how he should be behaving.

‘I don’t know what to think of it, to be honest. I don’t think anyone really does,’ he said. ‘No one has answers, our leadership is failing us, and everyone kind of just doesn’t know what to do.

‘But I personally am not the type of person who’s gonna sit around and not live my life,’ he added.

Paul’s July 16 party was thrown in spite of California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desperate plea for people to be wary of the virus. 

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YouTube star Jake Paul’s LA home is raided by the FBI

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youtube star jake pauls la home is raided by the fbi

Heavily-armed FBI agents have descended on Jake Paul’s Los Angeles home after serving the YouTube star with a search warrant.

At least 20 federal agents dressed in tactical gear arrived at the $6.9million Calabasas property early Wednesday morning to carry out a raid, TMZ reported. 

Video footage taken at the scene shows a number of FBI units riding in on armored trucks during the mystery operation on the 23500 block of Parksouth Street. Several U.S. government marked cars were also spotted in the vicinity. 

It is unknown what authorities were searching for or if the YouTube personality was at the property at the time of the raid.  

Scroll down for video 

FBI agents dressed in tactical gear descended on Jake Paul's Calabasas home early Wednesday in armored vehicles after serving the YouTube star with a search warrant

FBI agents dressed in tactical gear descended on Jake Paul's Calabasas home early Wednesday in armored vehicles after serving the YouTube star with a search warrant

FBI agents dressed in tactical gear descended on Jake Paul’s Calabasas home early Wednesday in armored vehicles after serving the YouTube star with a search warrant 

At least 20 federal agents hanging off military vehicles were seen during the operation at Paul's $6.9million mansion

At least 20 federal agents hanging off military vehicles were seen during the operation at Paul's $6.9million mansion

At least 20 federal agents hanging off military vehicles were seen during the operation at Paul’s $6.9million mansion 

The FBI refused to comment on the nature of the search since the warrant has been sealed by a judge. Pictured: FBI units cling on to government vehicles while leaving the home

The FBI refused to comment on the nature of the search since the warrant has been sealed by a judge. Pictured: FBI units cling on to government vehicles while leaving the home

The FBI refused to comment on the nature of the search since the warrant has been sealed by a judge. Pictured: FBI units cling on to government vehicles while leaving the home

The raid was reported to have lasted an hour and half. It is unknown what was seized from the house

The raid was reported to have lasted an hour and half. It is unknown what was seized from the house

The raid was reported to have lasted an hour and half. It is unknown what was seized from the house 

Jake Paul, 23, rose to fame alongside his brother Logan Paul, 25, on now defunct-video app Vine before transitioning to YouTube where he uploads reckless and adventurous videos

Jake Paul, 23, rose to fame alongside his brother Logan Paul, 25, on now defunct-video app Vine before transitioning to YouTube where he uploads reckless and adventurous videos

 Jake Paul, 23, rose to fame alongside his brother Logan Paul, 25, on now defunct-video app Vine before transitioning to YouTube where he uploads reckless and adventurous videos 

Authorities told local news station ABC7 they did not plan to make any arrests but refused to comment on the nature of the search warrant because it has been sealed by a judge. 

FBI agents were reported to have searched the home for about an hour and half.  

‘The affidavit in support of the search warrant is sealed and we are, therefore, prohibited from commenting as to the nature of the investigation,’ the bureau said. 

Paul, 23, who rose to fame alongside his brother Logan Paul, 25, on now defunct-video app Vine before transitioning to YouTube, has been embroiled a number of controversies over the years. 

Most recently, the star drew backlash last month for blatantly flouting social distancing guidelines as COVID-19 cases spiked in California, by throwing a massive party at the mansion.  

Calabasas mayor Alicia Weintraub expressed ‘outrage’ over the ‘outrageous gathering’ in which dozens of people without masks drank and danced.  

The FBI said no arrests were planned in Wednesday's search but it is unclear as to why the operation required heavily armed units in armored trucks

The FBI said no arrests were planned in Wednesday's search but it is unclear as to why the operation required heavily armed units in armored trucks

The FBI said no arrests were planned in Wednesday’s search but it is unclear as to why the operation required heavily armed units in armored trucks 

31603412 8596499 image a 68 1596649249785

31603412 8596499 image a 68 1596649249785

31603390 8596499 image a 53 1596647671716

31603390 8596499 image a 53 1596647671716

Paul purchased the 15,000 square-ft mansion in Calabasas for a hefty $6.925million when he was 20 years old in 2017

Paul purchased the 15,000 square-ft mansion in Calabasas for a hefty $6.925million when he was 20 years old in 2017

Paul purchased the 15,000 square-ft mansion in Calabasas for a hefty $6.925million when he was 20 years old in 2017

31603470 8596499 image a 57 1596647680483

31603470 8596499 image a 57 1596647680483

Paul later indicated to Insider last week that he would continue to do what he wants.

Videos emerged on social media shortly after the party, where revelers showed no concern for social distancing or wearing protective masks. 

People were seen drinking, playing beer pong, and swinging off a construction backhoe at the gathering. 

Revelers were both indoors and outdoors, crowded closely together without a mask in sight. 

Calabasas mayor Alicia Weintraub was left outraged after learning of the party and says she’s looking into ‘all options’ for penalties for Paul. 

Paul told Insider that he spoke to the mayor and ‘everything is cool,’ though he didn’t elaborate on what she said.

The mayor, meanwhile, said she didn’t speak to Paul at all, and only a representative for the the YouTuber. She said that possible fines would be issues in the future and the sheriff’s department would intervene. 

What pandemic? The 23-year-old faced backlash after throwing a wild party at his Calabasas mansion on July 14

What pandemic? The 23-year-old faced backlash after throwing a wild party at his Calabasas mansion on July 14

What pandemic? The 23-year-old faced backlash after throwing a wild party at his Calabasas mansion on July 14 

A man who appears to be Paul is seen in this video where a crowd of people surround a table filled with red solo cups and drinks

A man who appears to be Paul is seen in this video where a crowd of people surround a table filled with red solo cups and drinks

Several videos of the festivities were uploaded to social media

Several videos of the festivities were uploaded to social media

Party time! A man who appears to be Paul is seen in this video where a crowd of people surround a table filled with red solo cups and drinks

But Paul didn’t say that would put an end to his wild bashes, and insisted that it wasn’t clear to him how he should be behaving.

‘I don’t know what to think of it, to be honest. I don’t think anyone really does,’ he said. ‘No one has answers, our leadership is failing us, and everyone kind of just doesn’t know what to do.

‘But I personally am not the type of person who’s gonna sit around and not live my life,’ he added.

Paul’s July 16 party was thrown in spite of California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desperate plea for people to be wary of the virus. 

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Beirut explosion: Blast destroyed Australian couple’s hotel

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beirut explosion blast destroyed australian couples hotel
Australian Omair Jheir (pictured) was lucky to survive the blast only 500 metres from his home

Australian Omair Jheir (pictured) was lucky to survive the blast only 500 metres from his home

Australian Omair Jheir (pictured) was lucky to survive the blast only 500 metres from his home

A newlywed Australian couple living just 500 metres from the Beirut port that exploded with the force of a small nuclear bomb have given harrowing accounts of their fight for survival. 

Omair Jheir, from Sydney, was relaxing at his apartment in the Lebanese capital when more than 2,750 tonnes of highly explosive ammonium nitrate – the main ingredient in fertiliser bombs – detonated.

‘The sheer magnitude of it was more powerful than anything I have ever experienced. I was thrown against the wall, bruising my ribs, and my house just collapsed around us,’ Mr Jheir told The Daily Telegraph. 

The 41-year-old – who owns a hotel, restaurant and coffee shop close to the port – frantically tried to find medical help as he walked over dead bodies and watched buildings collapse around him.   

‘My friends, my neighbours, my customers, they were just ripped apart. There was blood gushing out of their faces. There were people on the floor dead. It was devastating,’ he said.

‘I was not wearing shoes and there was glass everywhere. My feet were cut to ribbons as I walked down the street.’ 

Mr Jheir created a makeshift bandage out of sheets to protect his feet before he and a friend went in search of a hospital. 

Newlyweds Omair Jheir and Hala Okeil had their lives torn apart after the explosion ripped through the city of Beirut on Wednesday morning AEST

Newlyweds Omair Jheir and Hala Okeil had their lives torn apart after the explosion ripped through the city of Beirut on Wednesday morning AEST

Newlyweds Omair Jheir and Hala Okeil had their lives torn apart after the explosion ripped through the city of Beirut on Wednesday morning AEST

Red and orange clouds of smoke billow into the sky from the massive explosion that has left at least 100 people dead

Red and orange clouds of smoke billow into the sky from the massive explosion that has left at least 100 people dead

Red and orange clouds of smoke billow into the sky from the massive explosion that has left at least 100 people dead 

But the nearest medical centre was flattened – and the next three were already overwhelmed by patients. 

He was finally able to get help after presenting to a fifth hospital, then drove two hours north where he was admitted to a hospital in Tripoli.

Mr Jheir suffered serious abrasions to his face and body, as well as a broken arm.  

His three businesses on Gemmayze Street were completely destroyed. 

His yoga instructor wife Hala Okeili was lucky to avoid the worst of the blast.

‘I was reaching home when [the port exploded]. I was lucky to be two minutes away,’ Ms Okeili said.  

The couple's apartment was completely destroyed when the blast ripped through the city on Wednesday morning AEST

The couple's apartment was completely destroyed when the blast ripped through the city on Wednesday morning AEST

The couple’s apartment was completely destroyed when the blast ripped through the city on Wednesday morning AEST

Shattered glass and overturned furniture littered the floor of the couple's Beirut home following the disaster

Shattered glass and overturned furniture littered the floor of the couple's Beirut home following the disaster

 Shattered glass and overturned furniture littered the floor of the couple’s Beirut home following the disaster

The couple lost everything including their hotel, coffee shop, restaurant and yoga studio

The couple lost everything including their hotel, coffee shop, restaurant and yoga studio

The couple lost everything including their hotel, coffee shop, restaurant and yoga studio

‘In five minutes, I lost my home and everything in it, I almost lost my husband. Thank God he survived the… massive destruction,’ she wrote.

‘The yoga studio is extremely damaged, my cat who means the world to me is missing.

‘The entire street we live in is down to ashes… many have died… Our lives as we know it are gone. What more is left!?’

The Australian hotel owner's new wife Hala Okeili managed to escape the worst of the blast

The Australian hotel owner's new wife Hala Okeili managed to escape the worst of the blast

The Australian hotel owner’s new wife Hala Okeili managed to escape the worst of the blast

The pair had only returned to Lebanon a month ago after a dream wedding in Sydney

The pair had only returned to Lebanon a month ago after a dream wedding in Sydney

The pair had only returned to Lebanon a month ago after a dream wedding in Sydney

In an tearful video online she added: ‘Thank God we’re alive. Thank God my husband is alive. Thank God the helper that works with us is alive.

‘Our house is gone. The studio destroyed. But we’re alive.

‘It’s really tough times, so thank you for all your solidarity.

‘God be with those who lost their lives. God be with their parents.’ 

The pair had only returned to Lebanon a month ago after a dream wedding in Sydney.

Photos from the day show the happy couple smiling as they shared the moment with friends in front of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. 

'Thank god we're alive. Thank god my husband is alive. Thank god the helper that works with us is alive,' she wept

'Thank god we're alive. Thank god my husband is alive. Thank god the helper that works with us is alive,' she wept

‘Thank god we’re alive. Thank god my husband is alive. Thank god the helper that works with us is alive,’ she wept

31588068 8595879 image a 79 1596642261078

31588068 8595879 image a 79 1596642261078

A drone captures the devastation wrought by the explosion, including a watery crater (bottom left) where the warehouse containing the explosive chemicals previously stood

A man reacts at the scene of an explosion at the port in Lebanon's capital Beirut on August 4

A man reacts at the scene of an explosion at the port in Lebanon's capital Beirut on August 4

A man reacts at the scene of an explosion at the port in Lebanon’s capital Beirut on August 4

At least one Australian was killed in the explosion which claimed 100 lives and injured 4000 more. The death toll is expected to rise.   

The blast at a warehouse district at the port, where 2750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate had been stored, near the centre of Beirut rocked the city early on Wednesday AEST.

Reports suggest the chemical, used in fertilisers and bombs, had been stored for six years at the port without safety measures and may have been set off by welding work.

Witnesses reported windows being shattered and buildings damaged 10km from the blast area.

Shattered buildings litter the skyline in the seaport of Beirut after the tragic blast

Shattered buildings litter the skyline in the seaport of Beirut after the tragic blast

Shattered buildings litter the skyline in the seaport of Beirut after the tragic blast 

People run in the aftermath of a massive explosion

People run in the aftermath of a massive explosion

People run in the aftermath of a massive explosion

An injured man waits for help at the explosion scene that hit the seaport

An injured man waits for help at the explosion scene that hit the seaport

An injured man waits for help at the explosion scene that hit the seaport

Cars and buildings were torn apart during the blast

Cars and buildings were torn apart during the blast

Cars and buildings were torn apart during the blast

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the Australian embassy in the Lebanese capital had been ‘significantly impacted’ but staff escaped without major injuries.

‘It’s my deep regret to inform you that one Australian has been killed in this horrific blast,’ he told Nine Network.

Mr Morrison said there were usually about 20,000 Australians in the Lebanese capital but he was unsure how many had returned to Australia because of the coronavirus pandemic.

‘Our hearts really go out to our Lebanese Australian community,’ the prime minister said.

‘I know there will be many prayers in the churches and the mosques in Australia but given the COVID restrictions, I would just urge the appropriate response.’

Foreign Minister Marise Payne said the embassy had considerable damage from the blast.

Army soldiers evacuate injured people

Army soldiers evacuate injured people

Army soldiers evacuate injured people

An injured worker walks at the explosion scene that hit the seaport of Beirut, Lebanon

An injured worker walks at the explosion scene that hit the seaport of Beirut, Lebanon

An injured worker walks at the explosion scene that hit the seaport of Beirut, Lebanon

‘About 95 per cent of the windows and front of the chancery of the embassy have been blown out,’ she told ABC radio.

‘Staff have been affected by a number of glass injuries. Fortunately, they are relatively minor and they have all been treated.’

She announced on Wednesday evening that In response to the disaster Australia would direct $2 million in humanitarian support to Lebanon to help with the recovery.

The funding will consist of $1 million each to trusted aid partners, the World Food Program and the Red Cross movement, to help ensure food, medical care and essential items were provided to those affected by the tragedy.

‘Australia and Lebanon have a strong relationship built on extensive community ties, with more than 230,000 Australians having Lebanese heritage. This tragedy will affect many people in both countries,’ Ms Payne said.

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31588666 0 image a 42 1596620992861

Fires were still burning at the destroyed port on Wednesday morning as the full extent of the devastation – in a country that was already in the midst of an economic crisis – was laid bare

Wounded people are treated at a hospital following the explosion, which has left hundreds of casualties in Beirut last night

Wounded people are treated at a hospital following the explosion, which has left hundreds of casualties in Beirut last night

Wounded people are treated at a hospital following the explosion, which has left hundreds of casualties in Beirut last night

A drone picture shows the scene of an explosion that struck the port in Beirut yesterday and has caused devastation in the capital

A drone picture shows the scene of an explosion that struck the port in Beirut yesterday and has caused devastation in the capital

A drone picture shows the scene of an explosion that struck the port in Beirut yesterday and has caused devastation in the capital

‘Tragically, one Australian has been confirmed killed. We send our sincere condolences to family members and friends.’

Labor leader Anthony Albanese expressed his profound sympathy for those impacted.

Human Rights Watch researcher Aya Majzoub, who lives 4km from the scene of the explosion, described it as a ‘humanitarian catastrophe’.

‘Entire neighbourhoods have been reduced to rubble. People’s cars have been crushed under the weight of the rubble.

‘People are still trapped in their homes or under buildings that have collapsed.’

She said hospitals were overwhelmed, had to treat patients in parking lots and were running out of medical supplies.

A destroyed silo is seen amid the rubble and debris following yesterday's blast at the port of Lebanon's capital Beirut

A destroyed silo is seen amid the rubble and debris following yesterday's blast at the port of Lebanon's capital Beirut

A destroyed silo is seen amid the rubble and debris following yesterday’s blast at the port of Lebanon’s capital Beirut

Young Lebanese women wearing protective masks and gloves stand amid the rubble in Beirut's Gimmayzeh commercial district which was heavily damaged after the explosion tore through Lebanon's capital

Young Lebanese women wearing protective masks and gloves stand amid the rubble in Beirut's Gimmayzeh commercial district which was heavily damaged after the explosion tore through Lebanon's capital

Young Lebanese women wearing protective masks and gloves stand amid the rubble in Beirut’s Gimmayzeh commercial district which was heavily damaged after the explosion tore through Lebanon’s capital

An injured man covered in blood is seen in Beirut following the explosion in Beirut on Tuesday

An injured man covered in blood is seen in Beirut following the explosion in Beirut on Tuesday

An injured man covered in blood is seen in Beirut following the explosion in Beirut on Tuesday

The Lebanese Muslim Association said there was a dire need for international assistance.

‘Today is a test of our humanity,’ association president Samier Dandan said.

‘We call on all people of goodwill to stand together in solidarity.’

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade said the embassy was making urgent inquiries of local authorities to establish the full extent of the impact of the incident on Australians.

It said all Australian embassy staff had been accounted for.

Australians who need consular assistance after the Beirut explosion can call (+61) 2 6261 3305 (outside Australia) or 1300 555 135 (inside Australia).

Dramatic footage shows smoke billowing from the port area shortly before an enormous fireball explodes into the sky and blankets the city in a thick mushroom cloud

Dramatic footage shows smoke billowing from the port area shortly before an enormous fireball explodes into the sky and blankets the city in a thick mushroom cloud

Dramatic footage on social media shows people screaming as an enormous blast rocks the waterside area of Lebanon's capital city

Dramatic footage on social media shows people screaming as an enormous blast rocks the waterside area of Lebanon's capital city

Dramatic footage shows smoke billowing from the port area shortly before an enormous fireball explodes into the sky and blankets the city in a thick mushroom cloud

It lay waste to the immediate surrounding buildings, where firefighters were still battling flames this evening, and even wreaked havoc on districts miles away from the blast site

It lay waste to the immediate surrounding buildings, where firefighters were still battling flames this evening, and even wreaked havoc on districts miles away from the blast site

It lay waste to the immediate surrounding buildings, where firefighters were still battling flames this evening, and even wreaked havoc on districts miles away from the blast site

Ammonium nitrate – the terrorist’s bomb ingredient 

Ammonium nitrate – identified as the cause of the deadly explosion in Beirut – is an odourless crystalline substance used as a fertilizer that has been behind many industrial explosions and terrorist attacks over the decades. 

Two tonnes of it was used to create the bomb in the 1995 Oklahoma City attack that destroyed a federal building, leaving 168 people dead, and it has been widely used by the Taliban in improvised devices.

Experts say a fire in Beirut started after a spark from a welder likely ignited the highly reactive chemical, causing a blast the equivalent to three million kilotons of TNT, killing at least 100 people and leaving thousands more injured.

There were 2,750 tonnes of the hazardous chemical held in the warehouse at the time of the explosion – which measured as the equivalent of a 3.5 earthquake. 

Death and injury from the explosion would have come in a number of phases, according to Dr David Caldicott from the Australian National University. 

‘Primary injuries are blast-related, as a consequence of the overpressure wave interacting with the hollow space in victims; lung injuries are often survived, but subsequently fatal, and bowel injuries are common.

‘Secondary injuries are caused by flying debris; effectively environmental shrapnel.

‘Tertiary injuries are as a consequence of being thrown by the blast, and quaternary injuries by other features such as inhalation.’ 

When combined with fuel oils, ammonium nitrate creates a potent explosive widely used in the construction industry, but also by insurgent groups to create bombs.

As well as the Oklahoma City bomb in the US, it has been used in a number of IRA attacks on the UK. 

These include the Bishopsgate attack in April 1993 that left 40 injured and a 40ft wide crater, and a 3,300lb bomb in Manchester in June 1996 that left 2000 injured but no deaths due to a phone warning an hour before the blast. 

In agriculture, ammonium nitrate fertiliser is applied in granule form and quickly dissolves under moisture, allowing nitrogen to be released into the soil.

However, under normal storage conditions and without very high heat, it is difficult to ignite ammonium nitrate, Jimmie Oxley, a chemistry professor at the University of Rhode Island, said.

‘If you look at the video (of the Beirut explosion), you saw the black smoke, you saw the red smoke – that was an incomplete reaction,’ she said.

‘I am assuming that there was a small explosion that instigated the reaction of the ammonium nitrate – whether that small explosion was an accident or something on purpose I haven’t heard yet.’

That’s because ammonium nitrate is an oxidiser – it intensifies combustion and allows other substances to ignite more readily, but is not itself very combustible.

For these reasons, there are generally very strict rules about where it can be stored: for example, it must be kept away from fuels and sources of heat.

In fact, many countries in the European Union require that calcium carbonate to be added to ammonium nitrate to create calcium ammonium nitrate, which is safer.

In the United States, regulations were tightened significantly after the Oklahoma City attack, with inspections required if more than 2,000lbs of it are stored in one place.  

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