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'Cameras have gone, but floodwater still there': Pakistan's foreign minister Bilawal Bhutto appeals for flood relief Pakistan
Image: Twitter video grab

'Cameras have gone, but floodwater still there': Pakistan's foreign minister Bilawal Bhutto appeals for flood relief

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 21 Dec 2022, 03:28 pm

United Nations: Pakistan's Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari appealed to the international community to maintain the flow of aid to help the South Asian nation's recovery from floods that ravaged the country ahead of a United Nations conference next month to mobilize funding, media reports said.

"We find ourselves in this incredibly difficult position where we're trying to manage our macroeconomic indicators with the IMF and provide the imminent relief for the people that is still necessary now in Pakistan, and plan forward for reconstruction and rehabilitation," Zardari told Bloomberg.

"Unfortunately, the cameras have gone, the attention has disappeared, but there are still floodwaters in many areas of my country," he added.

Pakistan is facing a deep economic crisis with foreign reserves to cover only a month of imports and with the delay in the International Monetary Fund's loan schemes its problems are financial problems are mounting.

The floods have left about $32 billion in damages and losses to the nation's economy and more than 1700 people have died in the devastating floods.

The UN and Pakistan's joint appeal resulted in only about 30 percent of the $816 million funds requested, according to Julien Harneis, UN resident and humanitarian coordinator in Pakistan.

They will seek more funds at a conference in Geneva, Switzerland, scheduled for Jan. 9, the report said.

"The entire unity government agrees that it's important for us to deal with international financial institutions - we want to see the fundamental reform that's required for the overall health of our economy," Zardari said.

"But at the moment, our number one priority has to be helping these people who are in extreme, extreme distress in the short, medium and long term."

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