Pakistan calls for int'l help after flood disaster

19:25, August 19, 2010      

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People fleeing floodwaters hold out their pans as they ask for food handouts at a makeshift relief camp in Sukkur, in Pakistan's Sindh province August 18, 2010. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

Pakistani Ambassador to Turkey Tariq Azizuddin on Thursday called on the international community to help the flood-hit Pakistan.

In an interview with Turkey's Anatolia news agency, Azizuddin said that nearly 20 million people have been affected by the floods and landslides stemming from the heavy Monsoon rains that started late July in Pakistan.

"A 165,000 square-meter area is currently under water. This equals to 20 percent of Pakistan's total surface area," the ambassador said.

Azizuddin said that more than 2,000 people have lost their lives in the disaster so far, and casualties were likely to rise as more bodies would be discovered once the flood waters lowered.

"This is the first time the region suffers such a major disaster," Azizuddin said, adding victims needed food, water, medicine and temporary shelters.

Noting that the Pakistani government used all its resources to meet the needs that have arisen after the flood, Azizuddin said, " we call on the international community to help us, because the situation we are faced with is much beyond our capacity."

Meanwhile, Azizuddin said the number of international aid campaigns kept increasing and the international media as well as the Turkish press did a good job in showing the world the scale of the disaster.

The ambassador also said that the cost of remedying the damage Pakistan incurred due to the flood disaster would reach 10 billion U.S. dollars.



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