Tuesday, January 31, 2023

US begins airlifting relief supplies to Pakistan, pledges $53 million in USAID funds for flood victims

The United States began airlifting critical relief goods to Pakistan as flood waters submerged approximately one-third of the country, killing nearly 1400 people, washing away crops, and destroying more than 1.7 million homes.

On September 9, U.S. Central Command (USCENTCOM) began airlifting lifesaving humanitarian supplies to transport 630 metric tons of relief commodities from USAID’s Dubai warehouse to Pakistan.

These supplies — including tarps, tools, plastic sheeting, and kitchen sets — will be distributed by USAID humanitarian partners to affected families who have either been displaced or are seeking to repair their homes.

The supplies come after USAID deployed an elite Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) to lead and coordinate the U.S. government’s response to flooding in Pakistan on September 2.

USAID Administrator Samantha Power also travelled to Islamabad. She visited affected communities in Pakistan from September 8 to 9, announcing $20 million in additional USAID humanitarian assistance in response to recent flooding.

The United States has now committed a total of $53.1 million in USAID funds, with $50.1 million going to urgent flood relief & $3 million to bolster disaster resilience.

Samantha Power began her trip to Pakistan by visiting Sindh Province to view the extensive flood damage, meet with the people of Pakistan affected by one of the country’s worst-ever natural disasters.

She visited Dadu District, in Sindh province of Pakistan, where she met with flood survivors and spoke with families forced to leave their homes and livelihoods.

Administrator Power then travelled to Sukkur where she met with Pakistani military members as well as U.S. military members who had just arrived on a U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster cargo aircraft.

The aircraft was carrying the equipment needed to establish a logistics hub that would be used to get much-needed relief supplies to the people of Pakistan. This aircraft was the first of several that will be transporting relief supplies to Pakistan from USAID’s Dubai warehouse over the coming days.

The Administrator also spoke with Pakistani military officials leading the response about their most acute needs, the status of ongoing rescue work and projections on water movement and future displacement.

During her visit to Pakistan, Power met with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa and officials of Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Authority.

She discussed the enormous scale of the damage caused by the floods in Pakistan, how the Pakistani government is responding and how the United States can continue to support the relief efforts.

Salma Khan
Salma is a passionate writer, ardent reader and dedicated teacher. She writes on topics ranging from education to technology to business. She can be reached at Twitter and Facebook.

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