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Pakistan criticised over flood response

Pakistan criticised over flood response
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The government of Pakistan is facing heavy criticism over its response to the country’s worst flooding in living memory.

The UN says more than 1,400 people are thought to have died so far, with three million directly affected.

Tens of thousands remain cut off after the deluge swept away dozens of bridges in the north-western Swat valley. They are still rebuilding in the region after a major offensive against the Taliban in 2009.

The lack of access means the authorities are struggling to help. Many claim they weren’t warned the flood water was heading their way. Others say corruption is rife.

The government and aid officials are due to decide whether to make an international appeal for help and take control of the crisis.

In the meantime, Islamist charities, some with suspected links to militants, have stepped into the breach to help survivors.

It is feared the floodwater is spreading from the worst-hit province of Khyber Pakhtunkwha to the Punjab, the country’s main food-producing region.