Children most vulnerable in flood-devastated Pakistan: regional officer

22:49, August 30, 2010      

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A Pakistani regional officer said here Monday that children are the most vulnerable among flood victims who are in urgent need of tents and food now.

"We now need tents and food items for the victims, especially for the children, so they have some good things to eat at any time," Manzoor Ali Shaikh, district coordination officer in Pakistan's southern city of Thatta, told Xinhua.

Thatta, a district about 100 km northeast of Karachi, Sindh Province, is now the worst hit area after the month-long devastating floods, which are the worst in Pakistan's history, killing at least 1,600 people and affecting over 20 million others.

"As far as population is concerned, we have shifted half a million people from the flood-affected areas to give them safe place until the flood is over," said Manzoor, adding that the government and army are continuing their rescue efforts as there are still "a few thousands" others besieged by floodwater.

Manzoor said some diseases, such as gastrointestinal and skin diseases, are spreading among the victims who are mostly living in relief camps around Maklee region, a higher ground above the floodwater in Thatter district.

"But we have no epidemic diseases until now," said the officer while visiting a Chinese mobile hospital set up by a Chinese search and rescue team. China is the first foreign country to have sent a relief team to Thatta.

The team, mostly composed of experienced doctors and nurses, arrived Friday at Thatta to provide medical services to flood victims.

"We do have concerns about their health, and I am grateful to the Chinese government to have sent doctors' team to take care of the patients here," said Manzoor.

China has provided a total of 120 million yuan (17.7 million U.S. dollars) worth of humanitarian supplies to Pakistan in three batches. China has said that its humanitarian aid to Pakistan was timely, efficient, sincere and without any additional conditions.

Source: Xinhua


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