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2010 Flood in Pakistan
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| Words: 1096 | Submitted: 18-Jan-2012
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Description2010 Flood in Pakistan
2010 PAKISTAN FLOOD
The summer of 2010 produced Pakistan’s worst flooding in 80 years. The number of people affected, who need food, shelter and clothing to face a harsh Pakistani winter, is 20 million. Flooding began on July 22, 2010, in the province of Baluchistan. The swollen waters then poured across the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Province in the northwest before flowing south into Punjab and Sindh. Estimates of the death till of the floods range from 1,300 to 1,600.
Even as Pakistani and international relief officials scrambled to save people and property, they despaired that the nation’s worst natural calamity had ruined just about every physical strand that knit the country together — roads, bridges, schools, health clinics, electricity and communications. The flooding, which began with the arrival of the annual monsoons, eventually affected about one-fifth of the country — nearly 62,000 square miles — or an area larger than England. Six weeks after the floods began, as rivers continued to devour villages and farmland in the southern province of Sindh, aid workers warned of a triple threat: loss of crops, loss of seed for the next planting season and loss of a daily income.
There was widespread worry that the disaster will destabilize the country and aggravate its already deep regional, sectarian and class fissures. Poorly handled relief efforts, corruption and favoritism have added to the distrust that many Pakistanis already feel for their civilian political leaders, while the armed forces have burnished their image performing rescue and relief missions along the length of the flooded areas.
The destruction could set Pakistan back many years, if not decades, further weaken its feeble civilian administration and add to the burdens on its military. The floods in Pakistan have upended the Obama administration's carefully honed strategy in a country that was already one of its thorniest problems. Pakistan is a central pillar of American regional strategy to combat the Taliban and Al Qaeda but also a place long troubled by a weak government and economic woes. Hard-line Islamic groups stepped in to provide aid where the government has failed to reach; the United States also sent aid with an eye to improving its reputation among ordinary Pakistanis.
The Pakistani government and the military were engaged in a campaign to restore public services in Pakistan’s northwest, trying to rebuild trust after more than two million people were displaced in 2009 when government forces launched a major offensive against militants. But the reconstruction efforts were painfully slow, and the public mood shifted from frustrated to furious. The country's infrastructure was devastated by the floods. More than 5,000 miles of roads and railways were washed away, along with some 7,000 schools and more than 400 health facilities.
United Nations officials said that a shortage of aid ...
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