Floods kill about 1265 people

Floods kill about 1265 people
Floods kill about 1265 people

The death toll from catastrophic floods in Pakistan continued to rise on Saturday, with 57 new deaths recorded, including 25 children, at a time when the country is witnessing a relief and rescue operation on an almost unprecedented scale.

A high-level body set up to coordinate relief efforts met in Islamabad for the first time, led by Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif, to assess the disaster. Record monsoon rains and melting glaciers in the northern mountains caused floods that affected 33 million people and killed at least 1,265, including 441 children.

The proportion of children among the deaths raised concern. The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said on Friday that many more children were likely to die of disease after the floods. During the high-level meeting, the chief disaster management official said the floods that inundated a third of the country were preceded by four heat waves and multiple raging forest fires, citing the effects of climate change in the country.

“The year 2022 has shown some harsh realities of climate change for Pakistan,” the head of the National Disaster Management Authority, Lieutenant-General Akhtar Nawaz, told a briefing to the country’s top leadership. He added, “This year we did not see spring. We faced four heat waves that caused widespread forest fires across the country.”

The fires were particularly intense in the southwestern province of Baluchistan, destroying tracts of pine forests and other vegetation, not far from the currently inundated areas.

Aid flowed in from a number of countries, and the first humanitarian aid flight from France landed on Saturday morning in Islamabad. But Pakistan’s largest charitable organization said aid and relief efforts did not reach the millions. Initial estimates put the losses at ten billion dollars, but surveys are still underway with international organizations.

Mobility is no longer easy due to the floods (Hussein Ali / Anadolu Agency)

The National Disaster Agency said, in a statement, that The death toll in Sindh province alone has reached 502, since the start of heavy rains and floods in mid-June. The statement said that during the last day, 17 people were killed in flood-related incidents in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, bringing the province’s death toll to 285.

Also, 257 people were killed in Balochistan province (southwest), and 188 others in Punjab province (northeast) since the beginning of the floods. The total number of injuries across the country has reached more than 6 thousand people since mid-June, in accidents related to torrential rains and floods.

The floods made many people homeless (Akram Shahid / AFP)

Yesterday, Friday, the Pakistani Minister of Climate Change, Sherry Rehman, asked Turkey to send a technical delegation to help her country in relief work for the flood victims. This came during her meeting with the Turkish Minister of Interior, Suleyman Soylu, and the Environment, Urban Development and Climate Change Minister Murat Kurum, who are visiting Pakistan to see relief work due to floods and torrential rains.

More than 3,451 km of roads, 162 bridges, 170 shops and 949,858 homes were damaged by the floods across Pakistan, according to the same Source.

(Anatolia, Reuters)

The article is in Arabic

Tags: Floods kill people

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