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Iran ready to take intl. aid to Pakistan

29 August 2010 22:54

Iranian ambassador to Pakistan says the Islamic Republic is readiness to transit the relief aid of regional countries to the flood-hit nation by land.

Mashallah Shakeri said on Sunday that Pakistan currently needs tents, water pumps, water filtering equipment, drinking water, medicine and canned food.

He added that “the high tide in the recent days has aggravated the conditions for the people,” adding, “Pakistan also needs ambulances and boats.”

Shakeri said Iran has sent 5,000 tents to Pakistan and 2,000 tents more were dispatched in the past few days.

“We are ready to provide temporary shelter for the people affected by the flood by sending more tents. Iranian Red Crescent Society is setting up a camp for the flood-hit people in the province of Sindh. Today, the society’s staff set out for Karachi to oversee the Iranian relief effort,” he was quoted as saying.

He also warned, “We believe that continuation of the tragic conditions has infuriated the people in Pakistan and it is possible that their fury would take the form of protests.”

He rejected rumors that some Pakistanis fleeing the disaster had come close to the border with Iran, saying, “The distance between the border regions and the flood-stricken areas is very long.”

However, he said that the prolonged grim situation in the flood-hit areas could prompt some Pakistanis to decide to leave their country for neighboring Iran.

Month-long floods in Pakistan continue to devastate more areas near the Indus River, the worst-hit area of southern Sindh province.

More than 1,600 Pakistanis have lost their lives in the floods that have hit nearly one fifth of the country.

The UN says more than 20 million Pakistanis have been affected and five million people have been made homeless.

Hundreds of thousands of Pakistanis have been ordered to evacuate as flood waters threaten several cities in the south.

Nearly 800,000 people are also stranded in areas that can only be reached by air.

Iran was among the first countries to dispatch relief supplies to Pakistan and has announced its readiness to help reconstruct Pakistan’s flood-ravaged regions.

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