China Explosions: Doubts Raised Over Chemical Licences

Channels Television  
Updated August 18, 2015

china blastMemorial services have been held in the north-east Chinese port city of Tianjin to pay tribute to victims of two massive explosions that devastated the city last week.

At least 114 died and nearly 700 people were injured in both blasts.

Meanwhile, authorities says the Chinese firm that owns the warehouse where the blast occurred did not have a licence to handle hazardous chemicals, until two months ago.

Officials in China also said that for eight months before June, Tianjin International Ruihai Logistics handled hazardous chemicals without the right documents.

The warehouse was storing hundreds of tonnes of sodium cyanide, far more than legally allowed.

On Monday, the people in Tianjin have led a huge protest, demanding compensations for the loss of their homes after the August 12 explosions.

In an open letter to the authorities, the residents said their groundwater could have been contaminated, and that logistics companies and chemical “dumping grounds” remained close to residential complexes.

“Our neighbours lost their lives there. Their screams can never be erased for a long time. How can we live in that ‘execution ground’ with any peace of mind?” the letter states.