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Heavy rains, storms hit refugees in Pakistan

Over 80 houses entirely or partially damaged due to rain, flooding across country, says disaster management authority

Islamuddin Sajid   | 17.04.2019
Heavy rains, storms hit refugees in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan

Heavy rains on Tuesday night damaged dozens of dwellings belonging to Afghan refugees in camps near Pakistan’s capital city of Islamabad, locals said.

"Around 20 houses’ walls collapsed due to heavy rain last night, but luckily people are safe and no casualties have reported so far" Jan Agha, a resident of the camp told Anadolu Agency.

"It’s still raining here but our refugees are busy rebuilding the collapsed roofs and walls" Agha added.

The rainfall and strong winds have wreaked havoc on the camp, as most of residents live in houses made of clay.

According to Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), at least 39 people were killed and 135 injured across the country over the last two days.

"So far 13 people died in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 11 in Balochistan, 10 in Punjab and five in Sindh province," said the NDMA in a statement.

At least 80 houses were entirely or partially damaged due to rain and flooding across the country, it added.

"We are facing much trouble as the families affected by the rain last night have no shelter to live in, and we have had moved them into the homes of our relatives," said Zaman Gul, another Afghan refugee.

Around 700 refugee families currently live in mud houses in camps near Islamabad.

The Islamabad district administration issued alert of more rains and thunderstorms in the area.

"A very severe weather system is entering Pakistan any time after midnight with the strongest winds in seven years and heavy rain and hail for 48 hours. Please take all precautions, cover your cars and avoid unusual exposure," said Muhammad Hamza Shafqaat, Deputy Commissioner of Islamabad on Twitter late Tuesday.

According to the country’s meteorology authority, more dust, rain and thunderstorms accompanied by severe winds are expected in the Islamabad, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab provinces in the coming 24 hours.

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