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Reuters camera operator, one of the first to capture Beirut blast, featured in MTV Lebanon special

The port explosion on 4 August in Beirut, Lebanon, killed 190 people, left hundreds of thousands homeless and caused up to $15 billion in damage.

To mark the one-month anniversary of the blast, MTV Lebanon interviewed some of the first video journalists to arrive on the scene, including Reuters camera operator Alaa Kanaan.

Kanaan described the scene he first encountered, telling MTV Lebanon: “At that moment, I didn’t see anything but dust, people running and screaming. I was going against people’s direction. I thought that I had seen it all, but it turned out, no. It took time to understand that the city I live in is destroyed.”

When asked how he maintained his professionalism while filming the blast, Kanaan reflected: “It can be a struggle, and can cause a guilty feeling of ‘I could’ve helped’. We have to stay professional, to deliver the message as it could be wrong to interfere, but the struggle is hard; you have mixed feelings.”

For more on how Reuters has provided world-class coverage of the Beirut explosion and its aftermath, click here.

[Reuters PR Blog Post]

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