Pakistan flood victims begin to receive humanitarian aid

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Mohamed swims one hour every day to get food from a WFP distribution centre in Pakistan

Nearly five million people have been affected by flooding in Pakistan's Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan provinces, according to the UN office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

The flooding which started nearly a month ago has also left over 1.1 million acres of farmland under water and killed nearly 10,000 heads of cattle.

OCHA says the huge swathe of stagnant water in the affected provinces is likely to contaminate water sources leading to an outbreak of communicable diseases.

Over 260,000 people have been displaced from their homes and are living in relief camps.

Jens Laerke is OCHA spokesperson in Geneva.

"In some areas people stranded in flood waters are still being rescued by boats to safer places. The immediate needs are on food, emergency shelter, health water and sanitation and hygiene services. In the initial first phase of the response 140,000 flood affected people have received monthly food rations in three districts of Sindh and Balochistan and humanitarian agencies have supplied medicines for nearly 450,000 people in the flood affected areas. Balochistan, Punjab and Sindh provinces are the hardest hit places this time round. Many of the affected districts particularly in Balochistan and Sindh were already struggling to recover from the floods in 2010 and 2011."

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) says schooling has also been severely disrupted in the affected regions with over 3,200 schools damaged by floods.

Duration: 40"

Filed under Today's News.
UN Radio Daily News Programme
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