- Supplies delivered to Pakistan with support from Dubai, International Humanitarian City
The World Health Organization (WHO) has airlifted medical supplies to Pakistan amid the humanitarian crisis emerging out of catastrophic floods in the country.
Two shipments carrying emergency medical supplies and equipment arrived at Jinnah International Airport, Karachi in response to critical shortages in the country, stated a press release from WHO.
“The shipments contain 15.6 metric tons of cholera kits, water and multipurpose tents that can be used as medical tents,” it said. “The supplies, estimated at a total value of $174,816, were delivered to Pakistan with the support of the government of Dubai and the International Humanitarian City.”
It added that the government of Dubai and the International Humanitarian City have established an air-bridge linking the United Arab Emirates and Pakistan, which is now fully operational with several rotations having already arrived in Pakistan to deliver critical humanitarian supplies in response to the recent flooding.
WHO representative in Pakistan Dr Palitha Mahipala noted that the floods have severely impacted the lives of millions in the country.
“We are currently working with the national authorities to ensure access to health care and medical supplies, mitigate the risk of disease outbreak, coordinate the response to ensure critical gaps are met, and prepare for any worsening of the situation over the coming weeks,” he said.
“Thanks to the government of Dubai, the International Humanitarian City and WHO’s logistic hub in Dubai, this critical shipment is arriving at an opportune time and will be immensely useful in helping to strengthen essential health services and control the spread of disease, especially in displaced person camps lacking safe water and sanitary conditions.”
On Friday, US Agency for International Development (USAID) pledged an additional $20 million in humanitarian assistance to support the people affected by severe flooding in Pakistan.
In a press briefing, USAID administrator Samantha Power said that the impact of floods was felt widely across Pakistan.
“This support is built on an announcement last week of $30 million in humanitarian assistance to help the people of Pakistan affected by these devastating floods,” she noted.
“With these additional funds, USAID will continue to provide emergency relief supplies, multi-purpose cash and shelter assistance, support for livelihoods, logistics, and humanitarian response coordination systems.”
She announced that USAID would also prioritise water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) assistance as a preventative measure to mitigate the anticipated spread of waterborne diseases.
“An estimated 33 million people have been affected, nearly 1,400 have died and more than 12,700 have been injured,” she stated. “Infrastructure in the flooding’s path has been decimated, with more than 1.7 million homes, an estimated 13.8 million acres of cropland, thousands of miles of road and hundreds of bridges damaged or destroyed.”
Since August 12, the United States has provided over $50.1 million in disaster assistance to help the people of Pakistan.
During his visit to Pakistan on Friday, United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres said that some regions of Pakistan witnessed the wettest August in history that brought 8 times higher rainfall.
“My heart goes out to the people who lost loved ones and suffered other kinds of losses. No country deserves this fate and Pakistan contributes nothing to global warming,” he said.
“It is paying a deadly price of fossil fuels being used all over the world. Even today, emissions are rising which is insanity and collective suicide.”
He urged the global community to “stop this madness and invest in new world energy now.”