India to route aid for Pak flood victims via UN
New Delhi: India has decided to route its aid of five million dollars for Pakistan flood victims through the United Nations as desired by Islamabad.
Making it clear that India has no problem in routing the relief material through the UN, official spokesman in the Ministry of External Affairs Vishnu Prakash today said the country would be in touch with the concerned UN agencies to work out the modalities.
"We welcome Pakistan`s decision to accept offer of assistance made by government of India. Now Pakistan has suggested that the assistance could be routed through the UN and we would be in touch with the concerned UN agencies to work out the modalities," he said when asked about Pakistan refusing to directly accept the Indian aid.
New Delhi has been maintaining that it was a humanitarian crisis being faced by Pakistan and it has offered the aid as a goodwill gesture. The modalities of providing the assistance do not matter, India says.
The floods have killed over 1,700 people and affected 20 million in Pakistan. Around 1.2 million homes have been destroyed or damaged.
The floods started over a month ago following heavy rains in the country`s northwest.
India had made the offer of aid on August 13 when External Affairs Minister S M Krishna called up his counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi.
Pakistan was reluctant to accept the aid. Three days later and after a nudge from the US, Qureshi said Pakistan was ready to accept the Indian assistance.
The resources of the Pakistan government and aid agencies are already strained in their effort to provide relief to the hapless people.
The UN, which is extending massive assistance, has said it is struggling to meet the needs of the affected people.
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