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IHH extends aid to Pakistani IDPs
Thousands of people have been made refugees by the fighting between the Pakistani military and Taleban members. The IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation started distributing hot food to 500 refugees dai
SouthAsia, Pakistan 23.08.2008

The fighting between the Pakistani troops and Taleban members has escalated. A de facto war is waged in the North-West Frontier Province of Pakistan.   

Taleban members have recently left Waziristan region of Pakistan for Bajaur and Swat. The Pakistani military, which had been following Taleban members closely, carried out a large-scale operation in the region two weeks ago. Troops were supported with air strikes against Taleban positions and the operation was followed by a curfew.     

Civilian targets were also hit during the operation. About 80,000 local people were forced to flee to the south.    

The internally displaced (IDP) people converged in the city of Mardan, which is relatively safer. The number of IDPs in Mardan is estimated to be about 300,000. They are mostly sheltered in schools, public buildings and city stadium.      

Pakistani IDPs in bad situation 

The situation of Pakistani IDPs is deplorable. The majority of the IDPs are women and children since men are staying in the fighting zone to protect their homes.  

The 100 IDPs IHH visited are striving to survive. They are staying in a public school building, but are having shortage of food and clean drinking water. Their children are particularly undernourished. It is stated that the children will become vulnerable to diseases caused by undernourishment if they are not provided adequate food soon.   

IHH distributes hot food to IDPs 

The IHH team dispatched to the region distributed hot food to 500 IDPs. Furthermore, the IDPS were given urgently needed relief materials such as foodstuff, blankets, clothes and medical tools.   

Local authorities warn that the humanitarian crisis might deepen if the current situation persists. The authorities also called on humanitarian aid agencies to extend help to the region. It was reported that the IHH is the only humanitarian aid agency in the region.

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