Pakistan flood food running out, warns UN

A flood-displaced girl looks out her makeshift tent in Azakhel near Nowshera, Pakistan (15 august 2010) Water-borne diseases are putting millions of children displaced by the floods at risk

The United Nations has warned its supply of emergency food aid for victims of Pakistan's summer floods will run out by the start of December.

UN humanitarian co-ordinator Martin Mogwanja said up to six million people relied on the aid every month.

With winter on the way, seven million people still do not have adequate shelter or quilts, blankets and warm clothing, he told the BBC.

The monsoon floods affected 20 million people and one fifth of the country.

At least 1,500 people died in the deluge.

Appealing for further donations from the international community, Mr Mogwanja said malnutrition was also increasing as food stocks dwindled.

And winter would bring fresh misery for the homeless, he said.

Those most in need of shelter are said to be in north-western Khyber Pakhutunkhwa province, northern parts of Punjab province and Gilgit Baltistan in the far north.

"The food stocks... are not sufficient to take us through into December, so there are a number of areas we are seeing increases in malnutrition of children," Mr Mogwanja told BBC Urdu.

"We really now need additional resources, urgently to ensure that the continuing relief needs are addressed particularly through the winter.

"And that those families who are able to go back home to their villages are given the first immediate support for returning to their lives."

The International Monetary Fund has warned that the floods could have dire long-term economic consequences for a country already reliant on foreign aid.

The UN launched its £2bn emergency appeal for Pakistan flood victims in September.

About $1.7bn has been pledged, but donors have only actually given $780m so far.

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