ISLAMABAD – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is rapidly scaling up food distributions aiming to reach approximately half a million recently displaced people from North Waziristan. Since the start of food distributions on Sunday, 22 June, WFP has provided 15-day food rations more than 4,600 families in Bannu and Lakki Marwat districts.
“We are working closely with the national and provincial authorities and civil society and our utmost priority is to provide food to all displaced people in the shortest possible time,” said Lola Castro, WFP Pakistan Country Director.
According to the Disaster Management Authority in the area, around 36,000 families have been registered as displaced so far following an operation by Pakistani security forces in North Waziristan earlier this month. WFP is aiming to provide food assistance to all those displaced families who have fled their homes and are staying in different parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province (KPK) including Bannu, Lakki Marwat, D.I. Khan and Tank districts.
The Government of Pakistan announced on Tuesday an additional contribution of 25,000 metric tons of wheat to WFP to continue providing food rations to all displaced people in KPK, including the families from North Waziristan.
With this contribution, WFP will be able to continue its relief assistance until early September; USAID has provided US$5.5 million to cover the cost of milling, fortifying and distributing the wheat.
WFP is distributing its standard food basket of fortified wheat flour, pulses, vegetable oil and iodized salt, as well as emergency rations of high-energy biscuits for children. Assistance is being provided from humanitarian hub established in Bannu and in Lakki Marwat. Plans are underway to establish further hubs and to operate from additional distribution points for NWA families in D.I. Khan and Tank.
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WFP is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide, delivering food in emergencies and working with communities to build resilience. In 2013, WFP assisted more than 80 million people in 75 countries.
In Pakistan, WFP has been present since 1968 and works in close collaboration with the Government of Pakistan, aligning its strategies with national priorities addressing sustainable food security and nutrition in the country and also focusing on enhancing national resilience to disasters, crises and external shocks. WFP aims to assist 8.3 million people between 2013 and 2015 at a total cost of US$535 million seeking, amongst others, to improve economic opportunities and promote social inclusion in FATA, boost community resilience in disaster-prone areas, and address nutrition and education in the country.