Washington : As Pakistan is facing devastating floods, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has called on Islamabad to seek debt relief from Beijing to deal with the natural disaster. “We talked about the importance of managing a responsible relationship with India, and I also urged our colleagues to engage China on some of the important issues of debt relief and restructure so that Pakistan can more quickly recover from the floods,” Blinken said in Washington, as quoted by Voice of America.
“I also urged our colleagues to engage China on some of the important issues of debt relief and restructuring, so that Pakistan can more quickly recover from the floods,” he added. Despite the efforts of the government and local and foreign relief organisations, many people are in urgent need of food and medicine in flood-hit regions despite the efforts of the government and humanitarian organisations, according to the Express Tribune. Notably, China is a key economic and political partner of Pakistan. The US whose Cold War alliance with Islamabad has repeatedly charged that China will reap the benefits while Pakistan will face unsustainable debt. But China has faced concerns about security following a series of attacks including a suicide bombing in April on a minibus from a Chinese cultural programme that killed four people, three of them Chinese, as per the media reports.Amid the ongoing devastation caused by floods across Pakistan, children are dying from cholera, an acute diarrheal illness contracted by drinking water contaminated with bacteria. According to CNN, more than 10 children are dying every day at the Mother and Child Healthcare Hospital in Pakistan’s Sindh province alone, according to doctors at the facility from Cholera which is a water-related ailment that stemmed from devastating floods in the South-Asian country.Balochistan and Sindh have been attacked by numerous infections that caused devastation in the two provinces. The stagnant floodwaters have led to widespread cases of skin and eye infections, diarrhoea, malaria, typhoid and dengue fever across numerous provinces in Pakistan, triggering health threats to people in Pakistan. “The floods came and the rain fell. And then our patients came in like the floods,” said Dr. Nazia Urooj, the physician in charge of the hospital’s children’s emergency unit, CNN reported. The number of malaria cases in the country had gone up to 229.