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UN issues flash appeal for $160m to help flood-hit Pakistan

The United Nations has issued a flash appeal for $160 million to help Pakistan tackle devastating floods that had killed more than 1,100 people since mid-June.

Pakistan Floods
Flooding in Pakistan

Officials said on Tuesday, August 30, 2022, that the pledge drive was launched in Geneva and the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, simultaneously.

“United Nations is issuing a flash appeal for $160 million to support response led by the government of Pakistan,” UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said in a video message.

“These funds will provide 5.2 million people with food, water, sanitation, emergency education, protection and health support.’’

He said that the world must take collective action against climate change and assist Pakistan in responding to crisis.

Pakistan has become the ground zero of this century’s biggest existential threat global warming, Foreign Minister, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, said.

The minister said that 72 districts and over 33 million people had been affected by the calamity.

Zardari said that the situation was likely to deteriorate even further as heavy rains continue over areas already inundated by more than two months of storms and flooding.

“For us, this is no less than a national emergency,” he said.

“The government had earmarked $173 million to help flood-affected people through direct cash transfers to needy families but “the disaster is colossal in its scale and devastation and has strained even overwhelmed both our resources and capacity.’’

Neighbouring China on Tuesday announced 100 million yuan ($14.5 million) in aid to Pakistan.

Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United States, European Union, the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank have already announced that they will contribute to relief efforts.

According to Pakistan’s planning minister, the flooding has inflicted around $10 billion losses to Pakistan’s economy, which was already struggling in the face of high current account and fiscal deficits and chronic energy shortages.

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