IN RESPONSE to Pakistan's appeal for international humanitarian aid following the massive earthquake on October 8, Slovakia is providing humanitarian aid to the affected region.
The earthquake measuring 7.6 on the Richter scale killed at least 33,000 people. Many thousands more were injured and made homeless. Slovak Interior Minister Vladimír Palko told the media that Slovakia would provide tents, blankets, warmers, heaters and medical materials. The first delivery of about 10 tonnes of materials was expected to leave Slovakia by October 16.
Slovakia had originally considered sending a rescue team to the region. However, European Union sources reported that there was no need to send more emergency teams to affected areas, though these teams are in urgent need of medical and first aid materials. In the end, Slovakia did not deploy an official rescue team.
However, a joint private team of Slovaks and Hungarians left the country on October 10 to assist the Asian country.
Fifteen rescuers, ten of them Slovak, were accompanied by two doctors and four dogs. The mission is being funded by Slovnaft and the Hungarian MOL company, which is a majority owner of Slovkia's oil refinery.
The earthquake in Pakistan was a result of India's long-term, gradual, geological movement north into Asia at a speed of five centimetres a year - a millimetre per week.
Several Slovak NGOs immediately started collections to help those affected by the quake.
The Slovak branch of People in Peril and the Slovak Red Cross are collecting donations to be distributed to people in need through Pakistani humanitarian organizations.
| UNICEF - account 2629726297/1100, variable symbol 1005
People in Peril- 2663520436/1100 Tatra banka (no variable symbol needed)
Civil association ADRA - 4975241312/0200 VÚB, variable symbol 4444
Red Cross - 665555/0200 - VÚB, variable symbol 666
17. Oct 2005 at 0:00