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Pakistan leader says militants could exploit flood
Question of the Day
That money already included plans to deal with infrastructure, water and power problems in Pakistan, and Mr. Kerry said at least $200 million now would be refocused toward tackling challenges in those and other areas directly posed by flooding.
The senator witnessed much of the devastation during a helicopter tour in Punjab province. The muddy brown water stretched for miles, with only treetops and upper levels of houses showing in some areas. A train stood idle on a track just out of the water’s reach.
“I’ve seen, unfortunately, a lot of bad things, but this ranks very high in terms of basic human devastation,” Mr. Kerry told reporters afterward. “It’s going to take an enormous international effort.”
The floods began in the northwest of the country after exceptionally heavy monsoon rains and since have swamped thousands of towns and villages in Punjab and Sindh provinces. While rainfall has lessened, flooding is continuing in parts of Sindh province as water from the north courses down the Indus and other rivers.
Local aid groups, the Pakistani army and international aid agencies have helped hundreds of thousands of people with food, shelter, water and medical care, but the distribution has been chaotic and has not come close to reaching everyone.
Officials said the ancient ruined city of Mohenjo Daro, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Larkana district, was now at risk. “Our experts are also present at Mohenjo Daro to monitor the flood situation,” government archaeologist Qasim Ali said.
Mohenjo Daro’s structures, dating back to the third millennium B.C., are mostly made of unbaked brick and are vulnerable to flood damage.
Associated Press writer Chris Brummitt in Islamabad contributed to this report.
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