U.S. to Pledge $60 Million More for Pakistan Flood Relief

Aug 19, 2010 12:08pm

ABC News' Kirit Radia reports: This afternoon, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will announce the U.S. will provide an additional $60 million toward Pakistan flood relief, according to three U.S. officials. Clinton will make the announcement in New York at a session of the UN General Assembly, which is meeting following a UN appeal for $460 million to assist Pakistan in dealing with historic flooding. The new U.S. contribution would be a 66 percent increase over the $90 million the United States has already provided. The figure tracks with remarks by Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, during a trip to Pakistan today. Sen.Kerry said that the U.S. contribution would now total $150 million. The United Nations has complained that international aid has been slow to arrive, even as the humanitarian disaster worsens. In an op-ed in the International Herald Tribune today, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon urged the international community to act quickly. “We simply cannot stand by and let this natural disaster turn into a man-made catastrophe. Let us stand with the people of Pakistan every step of the long and difficult road ahead,” he wrote. The UN estimates that 15 to 20 million people have been affected and that an area the size of Italy is under water. Its call for $460 million would help sustain 6 million people on $1 per day for the next three months. Officials worry that monsoon rains will continue and flooding will intensify. They also warn of a second wave of deaths from disease. According to the State Department, the United States has already evacuated nearly 6,000 people and delivered nearly 718,000 pounds of relief supplies. – Kirit Radia

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