The photos from Bata, Equatorial Guinea, are shocking: after a series of explosions at the site of a barracks, entire streets are littered with rubble and the foundations of some of the houses barely standing. Now the authorities of the authoritarian state have provided new information about the victims of the accident.
At least 98 people were killed. The number of victims was previously estimated at at least 31. According to the new balance sheet of the health authorities, there were also 615 injured. She added that 299 of them are still receiving treatment in clinics.
The disaster of the explosion occurred on Sunday afternoon in the city of Bata. President Teodoro Obiang had already identified “negligence and carelessness” as the reason on Sunday.
According to media reports, the victims included soldiers and civilians. The Sunday that followed the explosions, a thick column of smoke and an escape was seen in photos and videos circulated on Twitter.
The gateway to the real Equatorial Guinea reported intense devastation and panic. The pressure waves were also felt in many remote buildings. According to other sources, there were three successive explosions.
President Obiang declared that warehouses of dynamite and explosives were set on fire “when neighbors set fire to neighboring farms.” The fire could have spread to the barracks. The pressure waves had “damaged almost all buildings and homes in the city of Bata”.
Obiong said he has ordered an investigation to bring those responsible to justice. The President called on the people of Equatorial Guinea to remain calm. There is a lot of fake news surfacing.
With around 200,000 inhabitants, Bata is the largest city and at the same time the economic center of the former Spanish colony. Equatorial Guinea has been independent since 1968. For more than 40 years, the 78-year-old has ruled the country firmly.
In order to gain power, the then commander of the National Guard overthrew his ruling uncle, Macias Nguema, and was executed. The opposition and international organizations have repeatedly accused Obiang of committing human rights violations.