Pakistan: Pakistan Red Crescent relief distributions continue amid persisting heavy rain
03-08-2010 News Release 10/142
Geneva (ICRC) – The toll from Pakistan's worst floods in living memory continues to climb, with official sources putting the number of dead at more than 1,500. As floodwaters recede, the full scale of the catastrophe facing several regions in Pakistan is becoming clear.
" Our volunteers have already distributed relief supplies to 7,000 flood victims in Balochistan, and a further 14,000 people will be receiving aid in the coming days, " said Muhammad Ateeb Siddiqui, director of operations of the Pakistan Red Crescent Society. " Food continues to be distributed to flood victims in the southern part of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), in and around the heavily affected Dera Ismail Khan area. "
Bad weather yesterday prevented the delivery by helicopter of food and shelter items prepared by the Pakistan Red Crescent to 3,500 people in the isolated Neelum Valley of Pakistan-administered Kashmir, but the operation is expected to go ahead as soon as flying again becomes possible.
Assessment of the damage caused by flooding has not been completed because some remote areas remain inaccessible and telephone links are yet to be restored. " At the onset of the crisis, the existing resources of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the more than 50,000 Pakistan Red Crescent volunteers, many in remote locations, enabled us to carry out an initial assessment of victims'needs, " said Jean-Marc Favre, the ICRC's relief coordinator in Peshawar.
The ICRC and its partners within the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement remain concerned that water-borne disease could spread among flood victims. They are currently finalizing medical contingency plans for flood-affected areas, and plans for repairing critical water infrastructure and restoring it to working order.
An assessment of the need for family reunification is under way in the flood- affected provinces.
The Pakistan Red Crescent continues to deliver relief with ICRC support in flood-affected areas of Balochistan, FATA, parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (formerly the North-West Frontier Province), Pakistan-administered Kashmir, parts of Punjab and Sindh provinces, and elsewhere. It is estimated that as many as 250,000 flood victims will receive aid provided by the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement during the early part of the relief effort.For further information, please contact:
Christian Cardon, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 22 730 24 26 or +41 79 251 93 02
Michael O'Brien, ICRC Pakistan, tel: +92 300 850 8138