November 19, 2005
by Kevin Caruso
Representatives from Pakistan have been pleading to the international community for additional aid for relief and reconstruction from the October 8th earthquake, and, finally, at an international donor conference in Islamabad, Pakistan, on November 19th, donors stepped up and delivered about $3 billion dollars in new pledges.
As of a few days ago, less than $3 billion had been pledged, which was well below the estimated $5.2 billion that was needed for relief and reconstruction. The current total of $5.8 billion now surpasses that targeted amount.
The largest pledges included $1 billion each from the Asian Development bank and the World bank, $510 million from the United States, and $500 million from the Islamic Development Bank.
Even with the new pledges, however, serious, immediate, and dangerous problems still face Pakistan. And the most serious is that some 200,000 people are still isolated in mountainous regions because of large landslides caused by the earthquake, and the winter snows will cause many of these homeless individuals to freeze to death if they are not reached soon.
Thus, a high state of emergency and a “race against time” still exists for many in Pakistan.