Alexandra – a Canadian citizen, just like her mother, who is a former Montrealer – was one of the youngest to die in the August 4 explosion that killed more than 150 people and injured thousands more . For many, she has become the face of the Beirut disaster.
Her parents say they wanted their daughter to survive to be the “miracle” the city needed. Now their only hope is that his death will be a catalyst for change in Lebanon.
Finding justice for Alexandra
Alexandra’s death convinced the Naggear family to denounce Lebanon’s corruption and the complicity of the international community.
“I cannot find justice for my daughter through traditional channels, so this is what I have to do,” said Paul Naggear.
Countries with political ties to Lebanon, he said, such as the United States, the European Union, China and Iran, have contributed to “corruption, mismanagement” which has allowed store huge amounts of explosives for years in the city port.
“I want everyone to know what we are up against,” Naggear said. “This is one of the many incidents we have experienced over the past 30 years. This is the icing on the cake. ”
Before the explosion, Alexandra was at home, playing with a friend while her parents worked in their apartment, which also served as an office for their business.
Naggear said the grain elevators between their apartment and the port absorbed much of the force of the explosion. But it was enough to take away what the family held dear and strike a blow that Lebanon could not recover from.
Naggear said that the resignations of senior Lebanese government officials after the explosion are not enough and that “there must be radical change”.
He wants the international community to be cautious in its involvement in the country after the explosion and to ensure that financial aid falls into the hands of the people.
He wants people all over the world to know the solidarity and strength of the Lebanese people, those who are cleaning the streets themselves with almost no help from the local government and finding ways to help each other through the destruction of the blast.
“We think what happened was very difficult for us, it was a crime,” Awad Naggear said. “But let’s hope this crime will help us turn the tide in Lebanon and get our country back. “
As a result of the explosion, Awad Naggear suffered six broken ribs and a broken finger that required hours of surgery, but she is recovering.
A friend helped her get to the hospital after the explosion, while Naggear drove Alexandra to another hospital on a motorbike.
The swelling in her daughter’s brain was so acute, Naggear said, that surgeons had to remove parts of her skull to relieve the pressure. Forty-eight hours later, she passed away.
“We wanted her to be the miracle this disaster needed,” he said. “A loving baby, a loving person and hopefully the catalyst for the change we need. ”
WATCH | The parents of a Canadian woman killed in Beirut hoped for a miracle:
Awad Naggear says it is often said that “when you kill Beirut, it will come back to life”. As her daughter lay in the hospital, she whispered, “They killed you, please live again.
“My only hope today is that the fact that we lost a child will be a wake-up call for all Lebanese, expats and international people just to help us save this country. “