Red Cross in funding plea for Pakistan earthquake

Red Cross in funding plea for Pakistan earthquake
AFP, November 3, 2008

ISLAMABAD (AFP) — The International Committee of the Red Cross on Sunday appealed for 7.8 million dollars in emergency funding to help victims of the powerful earthquake that rocked southwest Pakistan this week.

The ICRC said that the money would be used to step up the relief effort being carried out by its teams and those from the Pakistan Red Crescent Society.

Up to 300 people were killed and tens of thousands more left homeless when a 6.4-magnitude quake struck before dawn in mountainous Baluchistan province on Wednesday, flattening mud-brick houses as people slept.

Some local people in remote villages have complained that aid has been slow in reaching them, particularly protection from sub-zero night-time temperatures. Health officials have warned of the spread of deadly diseases among children.

The ICRC's head of delegation in Islamabad, Pascal Cuttat, said: "Our priority will be to provide shelter as winter sets in.

"Because of continuing aftershocks, many people decided to sleep outdoors, at altitudes of 2,000 to 2,500 metres (6,500 to 8,200 feet)."

UNICEF on Friday appealed for five million dollars in donations to help its work providing shelter, clean water, food and medicine to vulnerable young children and women.

The United States has donated one million dollars to the relief effort, the US Agency for International Development said Thursday.

Among other foreign donations was a 100-million-dollar aid package from Saudi Arabia, the state-run Associated Press of Pakistan said.

Also See:
Red Cross in funding plea for Pakistan earthquake - Reuters
Pakistan quake hits apple orchards, livelihoods - AP
Hard-liners help Pakistan quake victims - AP

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