A massive blast in the Lebanese capital of Beirut killed at least 78 people and injured thousands more including some Bangladesh Navy personnel. BNS Bijoy was also slightly damaged in the blast which occurred at a port area.
Lebanese officials are investigating the cause of the explosive. Key players in the region such as Israel denied responsibility for the blast given their continued involvement against Lebanon for decades.
The US Department of Homeland Security stated the explosion was triggered by 2,300 US tons of ammonium nitrate stored at a warehouse in the port.
Lebanon’s Prime Minister said an investigation would focus on an estimated 2,750 tons of the explosives stored at the facility for 6 years after being seized from a ship.
The blast itself was so powerful that it was felt across the water in the island of Cyprus shattering windows hundreds of kilometres awat.
The Bangladesh Navy stated that at least 21 sailors were injured during the explosion as BNS Bijoy was moored close to the blast site. There are also reports two Bangladeshi migrant workers also died.
The UNFIL stated its other three Maritime Task Force ships were not damaged. Those ships were out at sea during the explosion.
The Bangladesh Navy is currently serving in United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) in Lebanon since 2010 with two warships including at least one frigate deployed on rotation.
BNS Bijoy is a Castle-class missile corvette of the Bangladesh Navy. She was commissioned in to the Bangladesh Navy in 2011. She has been serving in Lebanon since December 2017 replacing BNS Ali Haider and BNS Nirmul.
The Bangladesh Navy may seek compensation from the United Nations and Lebanese government for the damage and injuries to its personnel during the unprovoked incident.