For foreigners who have been trapped in Lebanon the nightmare cannot end soon enough. Several thousand have left since the weekend and the exodus is continuing. But it has not been easy. The port in Beirut has been transformed into a military zone to ensure a safe evacuation.
Several nations have sent naval ships to take their citizens home. People are also been airlifted out of the embattlled country.
Many witnessed at first hand the damage caused by the air raids. Some have criticised the international community’s response to the crisis.
One English woman said it was just by chance that she managed to secure a place on a British ship.
“If it had not been for me calling 20, 30 times a day I would not have been on that ship with my son and my husband. I would still be in Lebanon. When I found out through someone else who had got a phone call that the ship was going out I called and called, I had four people in the house calling, to try and get through.”
Lebanon’s tourist season was approaching its height when the conflict erupted, stranding thousands of foreigners. The evacuation is likely to continue for several days.