UN aid for Pak flood victims

About 900 villages have been submerged and some 100,000 homes have been destroyed.

Islamabad: A UN humanitarian agency on Saturday
announced that it will launch a multi-million dollar aid
programme in Pakistan`s southern Sindh province, where floods
triggered by heavy rains have killed over 170 people and
submerged hundreds of villages.

A total of 71,000 families needed food urgently and the
campaign to help them will be launched on Sunday in
flood-affected areas, said John Ging, Director of Coordination
and Response with the UN Office for the Coordination of
Humanitarian Affairs.

"The assistance has been divided into four cluster
sectors, including shelter, food, healthcare, water and
sanitation," Ging told the media after attending a meeting
with officials of the Pakistan Disaster Management Authority
in Karachi, the capital of Sindh.

A UN team is in Pakistan in response to a call by
President Asif Ali Zardari for urgent humanitarian aid and the
world body was very concerned at the loss of life and property
and damage to infrastructure, he said.

"The UN team`s presence will boost the morale of the
government in efforts to help the rain-hit rural population,"
Ging said.

Other UN agencies, including UNICEF, will ensure the
supply of one million medical kits.

"The UN and PDMA have worked out a strategy to utilise
the stock of existing supplies which were not utilised last
year," he said.

Sindh Chief Secretary Raja Mohammed Abbas said 172
people had died in the flood-affected areas.

A total of 70,000 tents and 180,000 bags of ration have
been supplied to these areas and Rs 600 million had been
released by the government to meet immediate financial needs,
he said.

At least five million people in Sindh and Balochistan
provinces have been affected by the monsoon rains.

About 900 villages have been submerged and some 100,000
homes have been destroyed.

The flooding has caused damage to crops, including
cotton and onions.

Last year, about 2,000 people were killed and about 20
million people affected by the worst floods in Pakistan’s


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