Rains in Pakistan leave more than 900 dead, including 326 children

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At least 903 people have died in Pakistan due to heavy rains and flooding this summer as the country sees its eighth cycle of monsoon rains, Pakistan’s climate change minister told CNN on Wednesday (24), when the country appealed for international assistance.

Thousands lack shelter and food due to this “humanitarian disaster,” said Sherry Rehman. “As we speak, thousands are homeless without shelter, without food. And the lines of communication were cut. It is a serious humanitarian disaster.”

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She also tweeted that among the dead are 326 children. The government is using all available resources to help victims, she said.

Heavy monsoon rains and flooding have affected 2.3 million people in Pakistan since mid-June, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

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At least 95,350 homes were destroyed, according to the humanitarian agency. Sindh province in the southeast and Balochistan province in the southwest are the two “most affected provinces in terms of human impact and infrastructure,” OCHA wrote in a press release on Tuesday.

More than 504,000 animals were killed, almost all in Balochistan, while nearly 3,000 kilometers of roads and 129 bridges were damaged, blocking access to areas affected by the floods, writes OCHA.

On Wednesday, the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) said more international funding was needed for flood relief, rehabilitation and rebuilding of damaged infrastructure.

Rehman, who was speaking at an NDMA briefing on Wednesday, likened the situation to record floods in 2010 but said large parts of Balochistan, southern Punjab and 30 districts in the Sindh region are facing an “unprecedented humanitarian disaster”. .

“People are adrift, livestock and crops are damaged,” Rehman said.

More heavy rains and flooding are expected, and schools in Balochistan and Sindh have been closed in anticipation of a new period of monsoon rain expected later in the week.

China said Wednesday that it would provide emergency humanitarian aid to Pakistan, according to a tweet from the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan. The supplies would include 25,000 tents along with $300,000 in emergency cash to help Pakistan’s flood-stricken regions, according to the statement.

Pakistan has monsoon rains every year, but nothing has been as bad as this summer’s rains, Rehman told CNN . Residents were caught off guard, for example, when 400 millimeters of rain fell over the course of hours in Pakistan’s largest city, Karachi, she said.

“No city is structured or prepared or climate resilient to handle this amount of water in such a short time,” she said. “This is torrential rain of biblical proportions.”

July was the wettest in three decades, with 133% more rain than the 30-year average, the National Disaster Management Authority said in early August. Balochistan, which borders Iran and Afghanistan, received 305% more rain than the annual average, the disaster agency said.

Source: CNN Brasil

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