ISLAMABAD: Saudi Arabia's King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSrelief) has launched a campaign to provide assistance to Pakistan by establishing an air bridge for relief operations in the flood-hit country, the Saudi embassy announced on Friday.
Two aircraft, carrying humanitarian aid from Saudi Arabia, landed in Karachi this week as Pakistan reels from record monsoon rains that have triggered floods across the country.
According to data from the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), floods have damaged 1.8 million homes, damaged roads and destroyed nearly 400 bridges since mid-June. The floods also killed 1,508 people nationwide, inundated millions of acres of land and affected 33 million people.
Pakistan estimates the damage at $30 billion, while both the government and the UN, whose chief toured flood-hit areas last week, have blamed the flooding on climate change.
Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador Nawaf bin Said Al-Malki, along with Dr Khalid M. Al-Othmani, director of the KSrelief office in Pakistan, visited flood-hit areas in Sehwan Shareef—located in Pakistan’s southern Sindh province—to distribute relief items among affectees, with the Pakistan Army.
“King Salman Relief Centre has launched campaign ‘The Saudi People's Campaign for the Relief of Flood Victims in Pakistan,’ by establishing Air Bridge to carry out relief operations,” the Saudi embassy said in a statement.
“King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSrelief) has sent two aeroplanes carrying tents, blankets, NFIs, food and dates which provide urgent and immediate relief to the flood-affected people,” the statement read.
It added that this relief package will be beneficial for quick and early relief for flood victims and will be distributed in collaboration with the NDMA.
Earlier this week, Saudi ambassador Al-Malki said the kingdom would assess flood damages through KSrelief and would send hundreds of trucks next week, loaded with humanitarian assistance, to flood-hit areas through the NDMA.