Russia sent first relief assistance flight for flood victims in Pakistan. The flight landed at Karachi Airport on September 21, 2022. Image Credit: Image Credit - Pakistan Foreign Office

Islamabad: First humanitarian flights from Russia and Greece arrived in Pakistan on Wednesday carrying tonnes of urgently needed relief goods for flood-affected Pakistanis, officials confirmed.

“The first relief assistance flight from Russia landed at Jinnah International Airport, Karachi. The relief goods include food items, tents and water purification devices” Pakistan Foreign Office said in a statement. On Wednesday, Greece also sent its first aid flight to extend support to victims of catastrophic floods in Pakistan.

Since August 28, at least 118 aid flights from different countries and international aid agencies have arrived in Pakistan. UAE, US, Turkey, Oman and UN agencies, UNHCR, UNICEF, and WFP, are leading humanitarian efforts sending critical food supplies, tents, and medical items to affected families. Pakistan has also received planeloads of relief goods from China, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Jordan, France, UK and Nepal, the foreign ministry said.

Millions of people are in dire need of humanitarian aid in Pakistan after the catastrophic floods affected more than 33 million. Some 7.6 million people have been displaced by the floods with nearly 600,000 living in camps. Pakistan government, the country’s armed forces, UN agencies and local charities are providing relief to the flood victims.

The flash floods have killed at least 1,569 people including 555 children and nearly 12,860 have been injured since June 14. The unprecedented monsoon rains and floods have ruined lives, swept away roads and infrastructure, destroyed over two million homes, killed livestock, and wiped out crops and livelihoods.

Relief good arrive via ships, trucks and trains

In addition to relief assistance flights, several countries have also sent critical supplies via trucks, ships and trains. Turkey has sent at least 13 cargo aircraft as well as dozens of trucks and seven trains loaded with tonnes of relief goods including food, tents, blankets and medical aid for the flood victims. Two trains have already arrived in Pakistan and the seventh train loaded with 812 tonnes of humanitarian aid in 39 wagons departed from Turkey’s Van province on September 20.

Besides more than 41 flights, the UAE has sent an aid ship carrying more than 18 containers of 2,750 tons of food, medical and relief items. Oman has also sent a ship carrying flood relief assistance that arrived at the Karachi Port on September 19. Tajikistan has sent at least 87 trucks carrying humanitarian aid for flood victims via the Torkham border.

Snapshot of aid flights to Pakistan (Aug 28 - Sept 21)
UAE - 41
US - 21
Turkey - 13
Oman - 6
China - 4
Qatar - 4
Saudi Arabia - 3
Jordan - 1
Nepal 1
UK - 1
France - 1
Greece - 1
Russia - 1
Uzbekistan - 1
Turkmenistan - 1
UNHCR (Operated by UAE) - 13
WFP (Operated by UAE)- 3
Total Flights: 119