ISLAMABAD: As relief efforts in flood-hit areas pick up pace, more countries, international agencies, charities and private corporations have pledged aid for the people who have been displaced.

The Chinese government has announced providing additional flood relief items worth RMB 300 million.

In a tweet, China International Development Cooperation Agency Chairman Luo Zhaohui said, “At this difficult time when Pakistan is suffering from major floods, China shares the difficulties of Pakistan, and we are ready to support our iron brothers within our capacity.”

Last week, the country donated 100m RMB worth of emergency relief supplies.

Chinese govt announces RMB 300m; Australia to give $2m

Australia has also announced $2m in humanitarian assistance for the flood-affected people.

The announcement was made by Australian High Commissioner to Pakistan Neil Hawkins during his visit to Benazir Income Support Program (BISP) headquarter.

Moreover, British High Commis­sioner to Pakistan Christian Turner has reaffirmed the UK’s commitment to Pakistan in this hour of need.

Mr Turner visited Khyber Pakh­tunkhwa’s Nowshera and Kako­la­bas areas, where a UK-based charity Islamic Relief was involved in relief work.

Earlier, Islamic Relief launched ‘Pakistan Floods Appeal’ to collect funds for relief efforts with the UK government announcing that it will match pound for pound for the first £5m in donations.

This was part of £15m pledged by the country for urgent life-saving support, including water and sanitation, shelter and home repairs, and primary healthcare, especially for women and girls.

EU activates Civil Protection Mechanism

Moreover, the European Com­mis­sion has activated the EU Civil Protection Mechanism (EUCPM) following a request from Pakistani authorities.

The commission has also mobilised 2.35m euros in emergency hu­­manitarian funding, while Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France and Swe­den have offered shelter items, medical supplies, non-food items, water pumps, bailey bridge, and medical and water purification teams.

As international relief agencies mobilise resources for relief ef­forts, UN Population Fund (UNFPA) Executive Director Dr Natalia Kanem said the Fund was urgently providing hospital tents, reproductive health kits and life-saving supplies to the affected population.

According to the UNFPA statement, of the 33m people affected, 6.4m need immediate humanitarian assistance, including more than 1.6m women of reproductive age. Out of these, an estimated 128,000 are pregnant, with 42,000 births expected in the next three months.

The Human Rights Watch has also urged donors to meet the needs of pregnant women.

Canadian companies pledge aid

Two of the Canada’s largest cellular companies have announced a donation of $100,000 to support flood relief efforts in Pakistan.

The amount will be channelled through Red Cross Canada to support the response.

The largest cellular company, Rogers, announced a donation of $50,000, while its chief competitor, Bell Canada announced a donation of $50,000.

Meanwhile, a UK-based NGO WaterAid has allocated Rs126 million to flood relief efforts, it said in a press release on Saturday.

Bakhtawar Mian in Islamabad also contributed to this report

Published in Dawn, September 4th, 2022

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