Devastating floods forced a national emergency in Pakistan

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The Pakistan government has declared devastating floods a “national emergency” after nearly 1,000 people including 343 children died and more than 30 million are without shelter because monsoon rains continue to lash the South Asian nation. The country’s climate minister Sherry Rehman said the floods have caused a “humanitarian disaster of epic proportions.”More than half of the casualties are from Balochistan and southern Sindh province. More than 100 districts across four provinces have been hit by the flood. Large swaths of the southwestern province of Balochistan remain submerged. More than 3,100 km roads and 145 bridges were destroyed in the country. 580,000 houses were also badly damaged or destroyed. Electrical towers were damaged.

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A large number of people were evacuated.The magnitude of this year’s rains was unprecedented. Pakistan is going through its 8th cycle of monsoon; normally the country has only three to four cycles of [monsoon] rain. Continuing rains are hampering relief efforts. According to the NDMA forecast, parts of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa might face “very high to an exceptionally high level of flooding” in the next few days. The frequency of heavy flooding is also increasing. Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has postponed his official trip to the United Kingdom, as he appealed for funds from friendly countries and international institutions amid the worst flooding in decades.