Funds crunch may force humanitarian agencies to shut operations in Pak: Oxfam

June 12th, 2009 - 4:54 pm ICT by ANI  

London, June 12 (ANI): Humanitarian agencies working in Pakistan may have to suspend their work in the country due to the lack of funding.

Famous humanitarian agency Oxfam, warned of a ‘humanitarian meltdown’, and said it would have to close down its operations in Pakistan in the near future, as it has been left with only a month’s supply of food and other important articles.

The charity said it would also stop providing clean drinking water, sanitation and other services to about 360,000 people to have been displaced in the Swat valley due to the ongoing military operation.

“This is the worst funding crisis we’ve faced in over a decade for a major humanitarian emergency. Some 2.5 million people have fled their homes,” Oxfam’s Humanitarian Director Jane Cocking said.

“One month into this emergency, we’re four million pounds short and will have to turn our backs on some of the world’s most vulnerable people. In the same period after the 2005 Pakistan earthquake, we had 14 million pounds committed,” Cocking added.

Cocking also highlighted the immediate need of funds before the onset of the monsoon season.

“With monsoon rains due by the end of June, serious health risks will increase as water sources become contaminated. At the time when the risks start to escalate we will be forced to turn off the taps for tens of thousands reliant on safe clean water,” she added.

She urged the international community to donate generously to help thousands of people in need.

“With so many mouths to feed, these communities will soon be running on empty. The world’s richest nations need to dig much deeper into their pockets to help,” The Dawn quoted Cocking, as saying. (ANI)

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