Though relief supplies ferried by the UAE government, the UAE Red Crescent and Pakistani community were timely, the 1000 metric tons of much needed humanitarian aid to tens of thousands of victims of the devastating earthquake, Pakistan's Ambassador Ahsan Ullah Khan ...

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Published: Mon 24 Oct 2005, 12:59 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 3:10 PM

said it was just the first phase, as the real task of providing shelter to 2.5 million homeless before the winter sets in, has yet to begin.

"President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan was first to respond after the biggest human tragedy on the first day, when he ordered dispatching the rescue teams", said Ambassador Ahsan Ullah Khan while speaking to reporters yesterday.

The UAE President sanctioned $100 million of financial assistance for the rehabilitation and development projects in the affected area, while the 100 bed field hospital has been set up in Balakot, which is treating 1500 patients. Work on $16 million, 300-bed hospital would start soon which the UAE government would build on war-footing.

"Pakistanis value their brotherly relations with the UAE and are grateful to the President, Shaikh Khalifa, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, General Shaikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan for helping the nation face this big crisis", ambassador Khan said.

He said apart from $100 million project aid for the rehabilitation, the UAE has also airlifted 28 critically injured earthquake victims for surgical procedures to Abu Dhabi’s Zayed Military Hospital, Shaikh Khalifa hospital and Mafraq hospital.

Mr. Khan said that initial estimates suggest that more than 50,000 people had lost their lives and over 60,000 people were injured, while nearly 3.3 million people had been rendered homeless.

"Homes, educational institutions, hospitals and government buildings have been destroyed in the affected areas. Half of the population affected was children. According to ILO report, around 1.3 million people had become jobless which was 0.3 million more than those affected by Tsunami disaster” said the Ambassador.

The ambassador stated that Pakistan’s missions in the UAE were working round-the-clock to collect and dispatch relief goods to Pakistan. More than 1000 metric tons of relief goods have so far been dispatched. He thanked the Pakistani community, UAE nationals and members of other communities for their generous support in this regard.

The ambassador further stated that the losses were so huge that Pakistan’s own resources were becoming insufficient to cope with the tragedy. He, therefore, appealed to all donors, humanitarian organisations, philanthropists and the business community in the UAE to come forward and participate generously in the relief efforts.

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