Islamabad: Pakistan’s unprecedented floods, which have submerged huge swathes of the South Asian nation, have killed nearly 1,500 people, data showed on Thursday, as authorities looked to step up relief efforts for millions affected by the disaster.
The floods brought by record monsoon rains and glacial melt in northern mountains have hit 33 million of a population of 220 million, sweeping away homes, transport, crops and livestock in damage estimated at $30 billion.
A woman and a girl wash themselves as they stand amid flood water
The tally of dead stands at 1,486, about 530 children among them, the National Disaster Management Authority said, as it released its first country-wide total since September 9, a period that saw 90 more people die.
Residents use boats to transport their belongings as they head to their village
Over the last few weeks, authorities have thrown up barriers to keep the flood waters out of key structures such as power stations as well as homes, while farmers who stayed to try and save their cattle faced a new threat as fodder began to run out.
Flood victims gather to receive food handout in a camp
The government and the United Nations have blamed climate change for the surging waters, in the wake of record-breaking summer temperatures, that have driven thousands from their homes to live in tents or along highways in the open.
Flood-affected children catch fish along a flooded street
Pakistan received 391 mm (15.4 inches) of rain, or nearly 190 per cent more than the 30-year average, in July and August. That figure climbed to 466 per cent for one of the worst-affected areas, the southern province of Sindh.
Aid flights from the United Arab Emirates and the United States arrived in the country on Thursday, the foreign ministry said. The United Nations is assessing reconstruction needs.