Pakistan wants UN debate on flood situation: Pak envoy

Pakistan Ambassador to the United Nations, Hussain Haroon has said that Pakistan is not fixing any target for international aid and trying to go to the UN General Assembly for holding debate on the issue of flood soon.

Talking to BBC radio, he said,” we have talked to the UN General Assembly president for holding a general debate on the issue of flood as it is a bigger tragedy than Tsunami”.

He said Pakistan was making all-out efforts for international aid. However, he added that the flood situation in Pakistan was not properly being covered in the western media.

To a question, the Ambassador said that according to a general estimate, the floods would affect Pakistan’s national economy up to $5-10 billions. Different segments of economy like food items, cotton crop etc will be badly affected next year too.

Haroon said,” instead of seeking cash, we are asking the international community to come and assist the victims in whatever form they want”.

He said the United Nations was making contacts with the Pakistan Army, the NDMA and provinces for direct delivery of aid. In the second phase, the foreign countries may give their aid for Pakistan’s future needs on their terms, he added.

To another question, he said that the aid was provided to Pakistan as per pledges, but the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) failed to distribute the aid judiciously.

A major portion of the aid was not even used. It was the issue of the previous government.

As for the present government, it is making its best to bring to the international limelight the magnitude of the catastrophe to draw world attention and we asked the international community to give aid through the UN, he added.