ISLAMABAD: As floods continue to devastate the southern part of the country, Pakistan on Thursday received 15 million pounds (1 pound=$1.15) from the United Kingdom and 10 million Danish Krone (1 Krone=$0.13) from Denmark as the global community stepped up efforts to provide relief to over 30 million flood-hit people.

By Jamal Shahid and Amin Ahmed

France also pledged an “extraordinary operation” to provide emergency relief to Pakistanis shattered by floods as Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari talked to his French counterpart regarding the humanitarian crisis brewing in the country.

The latest funding by the UK came after London provided 1.5 million pounds to Pakistan for relief operations last week. The UK is providing further urgent life-saving support to Pakistan following devastating floods that have left a third of the country underwater, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss announced.

At least 10 million pounds will go to international aid agencies on the ground to help them respond to people’s immediate needs, by providing potable water, sanitation, shelter, and protecting women and girls. It will also support families to repair their homes and maintain their livelihoods.

Denmark’s foreign affairs ministry said it had given money to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees to help the survivors, the statement said.

“We are seeing sad pictures right now from Pakistan… it is the most vulnerable who are hit the hardest by climate change …we lend a helping hand to UNHCR’s relief work in Pakistan,” said Development Minister Flemming Moller Mortensen.

Meanwhile, a statement issued by the French Embassy in Islamabad said at President Emmanuel Macron’s request, France was putting together an extraordinary operation to provide emergency relief to the people of Pakistan.

According to the French embassy, a special charter leased by the Airbus Foundation would transport 83 high-capacity water pumps, 200 family tents, and survival, hygiene, and protective equipment to Pakistan. The aircraft would also carry experts from civil security units, particularly doctors and nurses who would be deployed on the ground in consultation with the local authorities.

The statement said, the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs would also be shipping a 50-meter-long Bailey-type bridge as well.

Published in Dawn, September 2nd, 2022

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