Iran condoles with Sierra Leone after deadly oil tanker explosion
The spokesman for Iran’s foreign ministry has expressed his condolences to Sierra Leone after a fuel tanker explosion killed nearly 100 people in the West African country.
In a statement on Sunday, Saeed Khatibzadeh expressed his deep sorrow over the deaths of many Sierra Leonean nationals during the incident.
He also offered his condolences to the Sierra Leonean government and people and families of victims.
A fuel tanker exploded following a collision in the capital of Sierra Leone, Freetown, killing at least 99 people and injuring dozens of others.
The explosion left scores of others in critical condition, according to a health official, who noted that the death toll was likely to rise for many who were severely burned.
The explosion took place late on Friday after a vehicle struck the tanker in Wellington, a suburb just to the east of Freetown.
UN Secretary-General António Guterres said in a statement issued by his Spokesperson on Saturday, that he was “deeply saddened by the extensive loss of life”, resulting from the crash, when the tanker collided with a lorry at a busy junction in the suburb of Wellington, spilling fuel, before igniting.
The World Health Organization (WHO) also tweeted on Saturday that it was “mobilizing specialized supplies”.
“We are working to deploy burnt-patient care experts. We will provide more support as needed, at this terrible time for the people of Sierra Leone.”
Victims included people who had flocked to collect fuel leaking from the ruptured vehicle, Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr, mayor of the port city, said in a post on Facebook.
President Julius Maada Bio, who was in Scotland attending the United Nations climate talks, deplored the “horrendous loss of life”.
“My profound sympathies with families who have lost loved ones and those who have been maimed as a result,” he wrote on Twitter.