Senator John Kerry to arrive tomorrow

Senator John Kerry will arrive in Pakistan on Wednesday to visit the flood-hit areas.

August 17, 2010

Former American presidential candidate and Chairman Foreign Affairs Committee of American senate, Senator John Kerry will arrive in Pakistan today (Wednesday) to visit the flood-hit areas.

Senator John Kerry during his visit of Pakistan will take an aerial view of flood-affected areas and will also hold meeting with President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani to exchange views on floods devastations and matters of bilateral interest.

Sources also said that Senator John Kerry will also visit the flood-hit areas by taking aerial view of devastation caused by the massive floods in Pakistan.

Earlier the legislator told Washington-based Pakistani journalists before leaving for the South Asian country that he would have a first -hand assessment of the worst natural disaster to hit the country as well determine its impact on the region, where the US has high-stakes engagement for a successful outcome of nine-year old Afghan conflict.

The Democratic senator, who is due to meet top Pakistani political and military leaders during his visit, said the upcoming UN meeting is not specifically a donors conference but an “effort to try to really mobilize people to understand what is at stake.”

“My visit is really also geared to try to raise the understanding that this is not just about floods, not just about displaced people and the misery that comes with this, which is critical, but it is really about Pakistan's ability to move forward (economically) and to survive the difficult situation,” he elaborated, citing the challenges the country was already confronting because of its “stressed economy.

The United States, he stated, “is squarely there” to assist Pakistan, in the face of the unprecedented monsoon flooding that has afflicted 20 million people over 150,000 sq km of the territory.

“And we are proud of that,” he declared.

“The United States is clearly committed to the people of Pakistan in terms of (dealing with) the disaster. No question about that. That is why we have already committed $76 million, that is why (US) helicopters have already resuced some 3000 people, supplies have been delivered, half a million meals have been provided. All of these are very direct efforts,” Kerry noted.

“We are there. This relationship is important. We will continue to try to build this relationship,” he added.


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