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US pledges $60 mn more as aid to Pakistan


United Nations : The US has pledged an additional $60 million to emergency relief efforts in flood-stricken Pakistan.

The announcement Thursday came as US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was taking the floor at a plenary meeting of the UN General Assembly, aimed at strengthening the coordination of humanitarian and disaster relief assistance to Pakistan, Xinhua reported.

According to recent UN estimates, close to 54.4 million people in Pakistan have been affected by the worst natural disaster in the country’s history. The UN issued Aug 11 an appeal for $460 million from the international community.

However, “the combined efforts so far pale against the magnitude of the challenge”, said Clinton. “We know we face a humanitarian disaster of monumental proportions and it is creating economic and security problems,” she added.

To date, the US has contributed around $90 million for emergency relief efforts. Thursday’s pledge puts American contributions to a total of $150 million.

The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Wednesday reported that an estimated 1.5 million women of childbearing age are in need of urgent humanitarian aid.

As more rains are expected to fall throughout Pakistan for another month, the South Asian country will face multiple challenges in the aftermath of the disaster.