Afghanistan emergency: second airlift arrives
The second UNHCR emergency airlift flight carrying nearly 45 metric tons of blankets and plastic sheets arrived in Peshawar, Pakistan, today at 10:20 a.m. local time. The Il-76 cargo plane carried 17,000 blankets and 250 rolls of plastic sheeting.
More UNHCR emergency staff have arrived in Pakistan. They are being deployed in Islamabad, Peshawar and Quetta to support the emergency operation. UNHCR today is sending the first team of specialists to the Khyber agency in north-west Pakistan to begin work on a new refugee camp that will be used to accommodate Afghan refugees in the event of a major influx. Provincial authorities have given security clearance for the team, consisting of eight site planners, water and sanitation engineers from UNHCR, the Danish Aid Agency for Afghan Refugees (DACAAR), MSF, the Norwegian Council of Churches and the Afghan Construction and Logistics Unit (ALCU). The first site to be developed could receive up to 10,000 refugees.
Last week, four teams of United Nations, Pakistan government and NGO staff visited six tribal areas to inspect 75 sites along the border with Afghanistan. The teams found only 23 were suitable for use. Four of the sites, which meet our primary requirements, will be established simultaneously in the Khyber agency, Kurram, North Waziristan and Bajaur, all tribal areas along the Afghanistan border. UNHCR is continuing discussions with the authorities in identifying more sites.