October 27, 2005

Crisis in Pakistan

In a year where there has been more than enough tragedy, there is one brewing catastrophe that the world has not done enough to help avert. Is the problem compassion fatigue? Or just that there have been too many problems this year that the one unfolding in Pakistan is not getting enough attention? The UN reports that less than a third of the aid they requested has come in and people who survived the massive quake are facing winter coming with no help on the horizon.

MUZAFFARABAD, Pakistan -- Quake-ravaged Pakistan is facing a second catastrophe and a new wave of deaths if the world does not come forward to help survivors of the Oct. 8 earthquake before winter sets in, aid officials said Wednesday.

The warning came as the United Nations appealed for nearly double what it previously sought from donor nations gathering Wednesday in Geneva to raise money for victims of the temblor, which is believed to have killed nearly 80,000 people _ most in the high Himalayan mountains of northern Pakistan.

..."Catastrophe looms large," said Rashid Khalikov, the U.N. humanitarian coordinator in this destroyed city. "The danger is there that the loss of life would be very high if the required help does not reach them" before winter.

So what does that mean for us? It means despite the fact we gave earlier when the tsunami struck, despite the donations to help the victims of Katrina, despite the fact we have given before, this is one appeal we should not ignore. Please consider giving to an organization that is on the ground helping the people of Pakistan. Some suggestions: Mercy Corps, Oxfam, Intl Red Cross/Red Crescent, Doctors w/o Borders. And write your representatives asking that they increase the aid we give as a nation.

Posted by Mary at October 27, 2005 08:08 AM | Human Rights | Technorati links |