Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has said that Islamabad will not allow terrorists to take advantage of humanitarian crisis unfolding in the country.
Qureshi said,we are not going to allow them to take advantage or exploit this natural disaster. He was at the UN General Assembly. to attend a special meeting on Pakistan,underlining the need for immediate international assistance.
He added,the gains we have made against the terrorists are substantial yet we remain exposed. If we fail it would undermine the hard won gains made by the government in our difficult and painful was against terrorism…we cannot allow this catastrophe to become an opportunity for the terrorists.
His comments assume significance in the wake of the international community expressing concern that funds meant for the victims could be diverted to extremist groups.
Groups like the Falah-e-Insaniyat,a front for the Jamaat-ud-Dawah that has been blamed by India for having links to the 2008 Mumbai attacks,have set up relief camps in flood-affected areas in Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
Meanwhile,the US on Thursday announced an additional USD 60 million to Pakistan,bringing their total contribution to the flood relief efforts to more than USD 150 billion.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said,we will be with you as rivers rise and fall,we will be with you as you replant your fields and repair your roads,while addressing the meeting at the General Assembly after Qureshi.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called the UN member states to amp up the response to provide aid for more than six million people who need urgent assistance,which include 3.5 million children.
Ban noted that nations should not fall pray to what has been described in the media as “donor fatigue” in providing money to Pakistan.
The total number of people impacted by the flood is approximately 20 million. Ban pointed out that is more than the entire population hit by the Indian Ocean tsunami,the Kashmir earthquake,Cyclone Nargis and the earthquake in Haiti,combined.
The latest figures indicate that the UN has now received contributions worth USD 252 million,or 55 per cent of its initial appeal of USD 460 million for the first three months.
The UN member-states also unanimously passed a General Assembly resolution to provide emergency relief to Pakistan.
The resolution also said that unprecedented floods reflected the adverse impact of climate change and the growing vulnerability of countries to climate change a reason for the flooding in Pakistan.