Pakistan and America are working together toward achieving the common goal of building a better future for the people and will continue to do so, said Dr Marilyn Wyatt, the wife of US Ambassador Cameron Munter.
She was speaking at a function after opening irrigation canals project completed at a cost of Rs0.77 million at Banda Sheikh Ismail village in Nowshera on Tuesday.
The conciliatory visit was paid as tension escalated between Islamabad and Washington over the past few days. The project aims to provide financial assistance to farmers and their families.
Last year’s flood destroyed 380 acres of farmland and killed 8,250 animals in Banda Sheikh Ismail village, which has a population of 5,277.
Wyatt said that the United States has restored more than 1,000 flood-damaged canals in the flood-affected areas of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P), Punjab and Balochistan, 400 in 12 districts of K-P alone. She added that tube well pumps had also been installed for landlords.
Furthermore, she said, the US government was assisting flood victims and has provided seeds, fertilisers, livestock feed and medicine to more than 500,000 farmers in three provinces. Relief operation took place in the first phase, while rehabilitation was underway in the second phase of flood relief, she added.
Responding to a question, about the strained relationship between the two countries, she said, “The United States has had a long standing relationship with Pakistan and we will continue to work together and look forward to building a better world for our children.”
She hoped that the American-funded project, which is being implemented by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation and Pakistan Provincial Disaster Management Authority would help farmers recover from last year’s flood.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 28th, 2011.
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