Mir Salam Jogezai, Manan Mandokhail:
QUETTA: Chief Minister Balochistan, Mir Quddus Bizenjo on Wednesday told the visiting US Ambassador Donald Blome that the province was facing the brunt of climate change and global warming. The US Ambassador is on a visit to Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan.
“The province sometimes faces drought and sometimes floods because of its vulnerability to climate change”, Mr. Bizenjo said. Chief Secretary Balochistan, Abdul Aziz Uqaili was also present on the occasion.
Mr. Donald Blome assured that the US government, donor agencies, and the world bank were committed to supporting the flood-affected people across Pakistan.
— Quetta Voice (@VoiceQuetta) November 23, 2022
Floods damage 1,25,000 houses in Balochistan
Flash floods unleashed by heavy rainfall damaged more than 1,25,000 houses across the province, which covers half of the country in terms of area, the CM mentioned.
CM Balochistan stated that the province was also bearing the burden of Afghan refugees. However, the US envoy informed that the US government has allocated 1 million US dollars to support the Afghan refugees.
“Pakistan strives for a stable and peaceful Afghanistan”, Mr. Bizenjo told the visiting US ambassador. He said it was the desire of the people of Pakistan that the refugees should go back to their homeland with respect and dignity.
US provides 97 million US dollars to Pakistan
The CM informed that his government has taken a number of initiatives to support the people and informed that all unnecessary check posts were abolished across the province. He said special steps were taken to support the people living in bordering areas with Afghanistan and Iran.
About the Reko Diq project, he said an agreement was signed with the Barrick Gold Corporation after thorough consultation with all political parties and people belonging to various walks of life to develop a consensus in this regard.
Plantation Drive: The Ambassador also participated in a community tree plantation drive in Quetta, which will become a part of a larger urban forest in the city. The project led by youth activists aims to advance climate change adaptation, raise climate risk awareness and increase community resilience.
Speaking on the occasion, the Ambassador informed that the US government has provided 97 million dollars to flood affectees in Pakistan this year. He also spoke about the US-sponsored programs underway in Pakistan and Balochistan.