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Pakistan - Omfanget af jordskælvs-katastrofen frygtes øget drastisk!
PAKISTAN: UN relief chief concerned about colossal ‘disaster within disaster’
IRINnews.org, 15. oktober 2005
FN's nødhjælpskoordinator Jan Egeland påpeger nødvendigheden af en bedre koordinering af nødhjælpen, såfremt man skal undgå at katastrofen eskalerer og antallet af døde øges, som en konsekvens af manglende koordinering af indsatsen.
“We will have a disaster within a disaster if relief efforts are not effectively coordinated,” Egeland said at the UN Information Centre on Friday after a series of meetings with President Pervez Musharraf and other senior government officials in the capital, Islamabad.
The UN relief chief said the international community had not allocated sufficient resources for relief measures and called on the Pakistan government to renew appeals for aid.
“The number of helicopters operational at present needs to be tripled,” Egeland said. “If we don’t work together and organise our efforts we may have a still greater calamity on our hands,” he warned.
The UN Resident Coordinator in Pakistan, Jan J Vandemoortele, also appealed for greater efficiency. “One disaster has taken place. We must prevent another by coordinating our work,” he said.
Egeland detailed the severe traffic problems on roads leading to quake-hit areas. “It’s a total disaster,” he said. “What is urgently needed cannot get there because roads are clogged, while [unnecessary] items pile up all across Muzaffarabad. The whole of Muzaffarabad and the roads leading to it are choked and this signals disaster in itself.”
Pakistan authorities on Friday sent squads of motorway police to help manage traffic on roads to Muzaffarabad, Battagram, Balakot and Bagh.
Egeland also called for relief efforts to be prioritised, so communities that had not yet been reached could receive immediate relief. “This is obviously no easy thing,” he said, noting that more than a million people still needed shelter.
More helicopters would be needed as winter conditions led to the closure of roads, Egeland said. Only 30 percent of about 900 outlying villages are currently accessible by road.
President Musharraf has agreed to Egeland’s request to expedite international relief procedures. Visa restrictions for relief workers have been waived for up to three months and custom checks on aid consignments withdrawn to hasten delivery.
On Saturday, one week after the earthquake struck northern Pakistan, Islamabad said the death toll could still rise. Maj-Gen Shaukat Sultan, director general for Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR), said deaths could reach 38,000. About 62,000 people have been reported injured over the past week.
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