Mustapha Berri

To die is a destined fate, but to live with a permanent disability that increases life’s burdens and hardships is the hardest thing ever.

“It was like a tornado”, with these words, Mustapha describes the moment of the explosion.

Mustapha Berri was born in the village of Chhour in South Lebanon in 1960; he was destined to suffer from the August 4 explosion.

With a heavy heart, the father of six remembers that he was driving his car from Basta El-Tahta in Beirut to his house in Zokak El-Blat, when the explosion happened. He was hit with shattered glass, gravely injuring his right leg. Although Mustapha escaped death on that day, he was compelled to live with a lifelong disability and an unbearable share of physical pain. He can’t stand or walk on his feet without the support of a crutch.

Mustapha who enjoyed working in his butcher’s shop is obliged to work as a taxi driver to support his family, because both his shop and home were heavily damaged by the blast.

Mustapha says: “the government did not support me in any way as a person with a long-term injury after the horrific blast.”

Mustapha who should have been comfortably and peacefully living his life is in recurrent need for support, physical therapy, and family assistance. And although two years have gone by, Mustapha is still receiving treatment and undergoing surgeries for his leg, hoping he would get rid of his physical pains. However, the emotional pain and painful memories will never leave his mind until the day he dies.