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Home LATEST NEWS International Aid Arrives in Flood-Ravaged Pakistan: NPR

International Aid Arrives in Flood-Ravaged Pakistan: NPR

Tents for people affected by flooding are loaded onto a helicopter by border policemen, in Swat Valley, Pakistan, on Sunday, August 28, 2022.

Navid Ali/AP


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Navid Ali/AP


Tents for people affected by flooding are loaded onto a helicopter by border policemen, in Swat Valley, Pakistan, on Sunday, August 28, 2022.

Navid Ali/AP

ISLAMABAD — International aid arrived in Pakistan on Monday as the army and volunteers desperately tried to evacuate thousands of people trapped by flooding triggered by “monsoon monsters” that have claimed more than 1,000 lives this summer.

Cargo planes from Turkey and the United Arab Emirates began the international race to help the impoverished nation, landing in Islamabad on Sunday with tents, food and other daily necessities. The National Disaster Management Authority also dispatched trucks carrying Pakistan-organized tents, food and water to various parts of the country for tens of thousands of flood victims.

They were among the nations that pledged to help Pakistan deal with the crisis after officials appealed for international help. The United Nations will launch an international appeal for the victims of Pakistan’s floods on Tuesday in Islamabad.

Prime Minister Shabaz Sharif said Monday that the rains are the heaviest Pakistan has seen in three decades.

“I saw floods everywhere, everywhere I went in the last few days and even today,” Sharif said in Charsadda, one of the devastated towns.

So far, exceptionally heavy monsoon rains that triggered flash floods across the country have affected 33 million Pakistanis, damaged nearly 1 million homes and killed at least 1,061 people.

Pakistani authorities say this year’s devastation is worse than in 2010, when floods killed 1,700 people. General Qamar Javed Bajwa, the country’s military chief, said on Sunday that his country may take years to recover. He called on Pakistanis living abroad to donate generously to the victims of the floods.

Flooding and rain have caused devastation in Pakistan at a time when the country is facing one of its worst economic crises. Pakistan says it recently narrowly avoided a default, and the IMF executive board was expected to approve the release of the long-awaited $1.7 billion for this Islamic nation later on Monday.

Pakistan and the IMF originally signed the bailout deal in 2019. But the release of a $1.7 billion tranche has been on hold since earlier this year, when the IMF raised concerns about Pakistan’s compliance with the terms of the deal. of Pakistan under former Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Khan was also expected to launch a fundraising campaign on Monday night for flood victims.

Last week, the United Nations said in a statement that it has allocated $3 million for UN aid agencies and their partners in Pakistan to respond to the floods and this money will be used for health services, nutrition, food security and water and sanitation in areas affected by floods, focusing on the most vulnerable.

According to the scientists and Sherry Rehman, a Pakistani senator and the country’s climate minister, Pakistan experienced heavier rains this year mainly due to climate change, which also caused forest fires this year.

However, critics say the Pakistani government has little interest in building new dams and water reservoirs.

The unprecedented monsoon season has affected all four provinces of the country. The floods have destroyed more than 150 bridges and numerous roads have been washed away, hampering rescue operations. Authorities say they were using military planes, helicopters, trucks and boats to evacuate people from the marooned and deliver much-needed aid to them.

However, many survivors complained that they were still waiting for help or received little assistance from the government after being displaced by flooding. Some people say they have tents but no food. Pakistani charities have also been active in the flood-affected areas, and the government says everyone should contribute to help flood victims.

The government has deployed at least 6,500 soldiers to assist civil authorities in rescue and relief operations across the country.

Sharif has said that the government would provide housing for all those who lost their homes.

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