Pak to hand over relief items to Lankan Disaster Minister
ISLAMABAD—The first cargo flight of relief goods from Pakistan, for the victims of the recent devastating floods, landslides and torrential rains in Sri Lanka, arrived in Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo on Monday.
The Pakistani cargo plane brought full load of C-130 aircraft carrying priority relief items indicated by the Sri Lankan authorities, at the Bandaranaike International Airport Katunayake.
The relief items containing generators, shelters, tents and medicines were handed over by Pakistan’s High Commissioner in Sri Lanka Maj Gen (R) Syed Shakeel Hussain to the Sri Lankan Minister for Disaster Management Anura Priyadarshana Yapa M.P at a solemn ceremony.
Secretary, Ministry of Disaster Management S.S.Miyanawala, other senior officials of Sri Lankan government and Air Force as well as officers of the High Commission were also present, says a message from Colombo received here. Initially, the government of Pakistan had decided to send a modern 30-bed state-of-the-art field hospital as well as 17 medical doctors for providing health care assistance, however, on the advice of the Sri Lankan government, the government of Pakistan excluded the field hospital and has only sent the relief items as requested by the Sri Lanka government.
Floods and landslides caused by torrential rains with gale force winds in Sri Lanka have left 71 people dead, 127 missing, and over 319,000 displaced from homes while over a 427,000 people are affected by the adverse weather. The Pakistan’s High Commissioner reiterated the country’s continued commitment to assist Sri Lanka during its relief and rehabilitation efforts. He affirmed that Pakistan was ready to assist Sri Lanka in any way to meet its urgent requirements in relief and rehabilitation efforts. He said the people and government of Pakistan stand with the brotherly people of Sri Lanka at this time of grief. Sri Lankan Minister for Disaster Management Anura Priyadarshana Yapa M.P said that Pakistan had been a close and steadfast ally of Sri Lanka throughout the history. He said Pakistan had always been amongst the first who come and support the people and government of Sri Lanka. The second special flight carrying relief goods is expected to arrive tomorrow.—APP