IN BEELD. Inwoners Tianjin eisen schadevergoeding

Residents, whose homes were destroyed in the explosion at a chemical warehouse last week, protest outside the hotel where authorities are holding a press conference in Tianjin on August 17, 2015. Rescue personnel battled to clean up hundreds of tonnes of cyanide at the site of huge explosions in northern China on August 17, as state-run media lambasted officials over their response to the blasts which killed 114. CHINA OUT AFP PHOTO

Zo’n honderd inwoners van de Chinese stad Tianjin hebben een protestactie gehouden waarbij ze van de overheid een schadevergoeding eisen. Hun huizen raakten vorige week bij de zware explosies in de havenstad beschadigd. 

De ontploffingen van woensdagnacht vonden plaats in een pakhuis waar honderden tonnen van het giftige natriumcyanide lagen opgeslagen, in strijd met de veiligheidsregels. Zo’n pakhuizen moeten minstens op duizend meter van huizen, openbare gebouwen en wegen liggen.

Het pakhuis dat ontplofte lag echter op minder dan vijfhonderd meter van een snelweg en een enorm appartementencomplex. De inwoners van die woningen eisen nu geld. «Wij, slachtoffers, eisen: overheid, koop onze huizen terug», stond op een van de spandoeken bij een protest bij het Mayfair Hotel. In dat hotel houden de autoriteiten dagelijks persconferenties met updates over de ramp.

Het is nog steeds een raadsel hoe er zoveel natriumcyanide, dat omgezet wordt in een ontvlambaar gas na contact met water, in het pakhuis kon liggen. Volgens de veiligheidsvoorschriften mocht er maximaal tien ton opgeslagen liggen. Het dodental na de ramp is inmiddels opgelopen tot 114. Zeventig mensen worden nog vermist, het gaat vooral om brandweermannen.

Residents, whose homes were destroyed in the explosion at a chemical warehouse last week, protest outside the hotel where authorities are holding a press conference in Tianjin on August 17, 2015. Rescue personnel battled to clean up hundreds of tonnes of cyanide at the site of huge explosions in northern China on August 17, as state-run media lambasted officials over their response to the blasts which killed 114.        CHINA OUT     AFP PHOTO
AFP PHOTO
Residents, whose homes were destroyed in the explosion at a chemical warehouse last week, protest outside the hotel where authorities are holding a press conference in Tianjin on August 17, 2015. Rescue personnel battled to clean up hundreds of tonnes of cyanide at the site of huge explosions in northern China on August 17, as state-run media lambasted officials over their response to the blasts which killed 114.        CHINA OUT     AFP PHOTO
AFP PHOTO
Residents, whose homes were destroyed in the explosion at a chemical warehouse last week, protest outside the hotel where authorities are holding a press conference in Tianjin on August 17, 2015. Rescue personnel battled to clean up hundreds of tonnes of cyanide at the site of huge explosions in northern China on August 17, as state-run media lambasted officials over their response to the blasts which killed 114.        CHINA OUT     AFP PHOTO
AFP PHOTO
Two women hug one another as they join other residents whose homes were destroyed in the explosion at a chemical warehouse last week in protest outside the hotel where authorities are holding a press conference in Tianjin on August 17, 2015. Rescue personnel battled to clean up hundreds of tonnes of cyanide at the site of huge explosions in northern China on August 17, as state-run media lambasted officials over their response to the blasts which killed 114.        CHINA OUT     AFP PHOTO
AFP PHOTO
This picture taken on August 16, 2015 shows a man who was injured holding a photo of his damaged home, as he joins people protesting outside the hotel where authorities are holding a press conference in Tianjin.  Rescue personnel battled to clean up hundreds of tonnes of cyanide at the site of huge explosions in northern China on August 17, as state-run media lambasted officials over their response to the blasts which killed 114.                 AFP PHOTO   CHINA OUT    CHINA OUT      AFP PHOTO
AFP PHOTO
Residents, whose homes were destroyed in the explosion at a chemical warehouse last week, hold a banner reading "the heavily destroyed area of Hai Gang Cheng (block name) is no more a heaven, but a hell", as they protest outside the hotel where authorities are holding a press conference in Tianjin on August 17, 2015. Rescue personnel battled to clean up hundreds of tonnes of cyanide at the site of huge explosions in northern China on August 17, as state-run media lambasted officials over their response to the blasts which killed 114.        CHINA OUT     AFP PHOTO
AFP PHOTO
A family member (C) of a missing firefighter from the recent explosions at a chemical warehouse protests outside a hotel where authorities are holding a press conference in Tianjin on August 16, 2015. Furious, frustrated and fearful, relatives of the missing in the giant explosions in Tianjin besieged officials demanding answers on their loved ones's fates - only for security to intervene instead. The death toll from two massive explosions in the Chinese port of Tianjin has risen to 112, an official said on August 16.        CHINA OUT     AFP PHOTO
AFP PHOTO