Estonia to help in relief effort in Pakistan

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The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will contribute 64,000 euros through the UN World Food Programme toward easing the plight of the victims of flooding caused by heavy monsoon rains in Pakistan.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Paet noted that more than 3 million people have been affected by the floods. “Very many inhabitants of Pakistan have been left homeless, and in the worst cases they have lost loved ones. For these victims, survival and continued coping will depend greatly the relief efforts,” said Paet. “For the next three months, Estonia will be supplying food to residents of regions affected by the disaster.”

The United Nations World Food Programme (UN WFP) has asked donor countries for assistance in supporting the flood victims. The WFP has been central to relief efforts since the crisis began. On 1 August, the first deliveries of food arrived to 3000 families in Peshawar, Nowshera and Charsadda. Delivery has been hampered by damage to key transport routes and bridges.

The UN estimates that the floods – the worst in recent Pakistani history – directly impacts three million people. The floods and related landslides have claimed 1,400 lives in the north-western part of the country. Death tolls may rise amid continuing rain and many have been reported missing. Many roads have been closed and infrastructure destroyed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, with 30,000 homes damaged. A cholera outbreak has also been reported.

The regions impacted by the flooding are the country’s poorest and the WFP was already been providing assistance in the region to 2.7 million people displaced by the conflict in Afghanistan.

The humanitarian aid for Pakistan will come from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs budget for development and humanitarian assistance.

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