Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif recently wrote an opinion for The Guardian, detailing how the country plunged into crisis after unprecedented floods last summer. Sharif wrote that the floods “left a swathe of territory the size of Switzerland under water and affected 33 million people”. 

In the op-ed, Sharif stated that large parts of Sindh and Balochistan provinces remain inundated and the food crisis is posing challenges as the number of food-insecure people in Pakistan has “doubled to 14 million”. He said that another nine million have been “pushed into extreme poverty”. 

The Pakistan prime minister urged the world to help the crises-hit nation as it hosted an international conference in Geneva with the help of the United Nations. The South Asian nation aimed at generating international support for rebuilding efforts. 

Pakistan said it had received pledges of more than $9 billion at an international conference seeking support for its recovery from last year’s devastating floods — more than requested. 

Hina Rabbani Khar, who is Pakistan’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, told the close of the conference in Geneva: “The message from the world is clear: the world will stand by those who go through any natural calamities and will not leave them alone.” 

WATCH | WION Dispatch: Pakistan seeks global community’s aid for rehabilitation of flood victims 

At the International Conference on a Climate Resilient Pakistan, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres sought “massive investments” for Pakistan. 

“The epic floods were nothing short of a monsoon on steroids – as I mentioned in my visit – submerging one-third of the country, three times the area of my own country, Portugal,” the UN Chief said. 

He added, “A terrifying wall of water killed more than 1,700 people, injured thousands more, and affected a total of more than 33 million, displacing 8 million people. It swept over roads, ruined millions of acres of agricultural land, and damaged or destroyed 2 million homes. And it pushed back 9 million people to the brink of poverty.” 

(With inputs from agencies) 


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