Pakistan: One million people without drinking water in flood-affected areas Geopolitics News

Pakistan: One million people without drinking water in flood-affected areas

Abdullah Fadil, UNICEF Representative in Pakistan, said: “Drinking water is not a privilege, but a basic human right.

“Yet every day in Pakistan, millions of boys and girls live in the shadow of waterborne diseases, without adequate shelter, and fight a losing battle against malnutrition,” he said. .

In Pakistan, more than 32 million people were affected by the natural disaster that occurred after torrential rains in July and August 2022.

Girls and women at “additional risk”

UNICEF has warned that the lack of access to clean water and toilets, as well as the accumulation of contaminated water, are increasing the spread of “widespread” and deadly waterborne diseases, including cholera, diarrhoea, dengue and malaria.

According to the United Nations Children’s Fund, the lack of adequate toilets, in addition to being a major threat to health, “disproportionately affects children, adolescent girls and women, who are forced to defecate at home. ‘outdoors”.

growing malnutrition

Unsafe drinking water and poor sanitation are also “main causes” of malnutrition. According to UNICEF, a third of all child deaths worldwide are due to malnutrition. Most cases of malnutrition are linked to infections caused by a lack of clean water, adequate sanitation and hygiene.

In flood-affected areas of Pakistan, more than 1.5 million boys and girls are already suffering from severe malnutrition, and UNICEF expects this number to rise. Malnutrition is associated with half of the total number of child deaths in the country.

humanitarian aid

In 2022, a third of Pakistan was submerged due to unprecedented flooding caused by torrential rains during the monsoon.

According to the United Nations Office in Pakistan, more than 33 million people in total have been affected by these floods and 8 million people have been displaced, which has led to a sharp increase in humanitarian assistance.

The United Nations reported on Tuesday that as of March 15, humanitarian aid had reached more than seven million flood-affected people, including food and other essential services. UNICEF and its partners have so far provided clean water to nearly 1.2 million children and families, and helped rehabilitate water supply facilities, which have benefited more than 450 000 people.

United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres Addressing an international conference in Geneva dedicated to the emergency in January 2023, he said “women and children will need help” to make Pakistan sustainably strong.

shout for help

On World Water Day, UNICEF has appealed for resources to urgently restore access to clean water and toilets in flood-affected areas. Investments are also needed in climate-resilient water supply facilities, for example in solar-powered facilities.

In response to UNICEF’s appeal for $173.5 million to address this crisis, only 50% of the funds have been received.

Pakistan: One million people without drinking water in flood-affected areas

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