Firefighters and rescuers are seen at the site of an explosion in the Beirut neighborhood of Bir Hasan, Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)
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It was 9:15 a.m. and the road to the left leading to the roundabout near the Iranian Cultural Center was completely empty. So I drove quickly, passing by an Army barracks and the European Exhibition Center before reaching the roundabout which is often jammed with vehicles coming from different directions. I had to stop for at least five minutes at the roundabout before the traffic eased a bit, allowing me to veer right near a palace belonging to former Lebanese Prime Minister Riad al-Solh, rather than taking the congested road leading to the Kuwaiti Embassy to go to Haret Hreik. It was after 9:20 a.m. when the traffic eased, prompting me to drive faster, heading toward the airport bridge. Again, traffic was jammed from four directions at the roundabout under the airport bridge. Within minutes, troops from a nearby Army checkpoint rushed to the blast site in five vehicles, while military police and General Security officers in the area blocked the road toward the Sahel Hospital to clear the way for ambulances carrying people wounded in the twin bombings.The kids, who experienced previous bombings in Haret Hreik, were stunned when I told them it was divine intervention that saved my life.
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