Karachi, 21 September 2022 (TDI): A special EMERCOM aircraft with 35 tonnes of humanitarian goods from Russia arrived in Karachi.

The cargo, which included basic supplies, food items, tents, and water purifying devices, was delivered to Pakistan during a ceremony.

Russian Consul General in Pakistan, Andrey Fedorov oversaw the handing-taking over the ceremony. EMERCOM is the Ministry of the Russian Federation for Civil Defence, Emergency Situations, and Elimination of Consequences of Natural Disasters.

It is also known as the Ministry of Emergency Situations or internationally as EMERCOM; derived from “Emergency Control Ministry.”

It is pertinent to note that, this is the first humanitarian aid flight by Russia to help Pakistan in the aftermath of the 2022 floods. So far over 100 humanitarian flights arrived in Pakistan with much-needed aid.

Russia-Pakistan Ties

In the face of devastating floods in Pakistan in 2022 and potential food shortages, Russia offered to deliver wheat to Pakistan in addition to gas supplies.

Furthermore, during a meeting with Shehbaz Sharif on the sidelines of the recently held SCO Summit in Uzbekistan, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that pipeline gas deliveries to Pakistan are likely.

He also stated that part of the infrastructure has already been built. Furthermore, according to statements made by Pakistan’s Minister of Defense, Russian President Vladimir Putin praised Pakistan’s UN and international stance on the Russian-Ukrainian conflict.

Also Read: Heads of Russia, Pakistan meet on sidelines of SCO Summit 2022

The Soviet Union (predecessor of the Russian Federation) and Pakistan established diplomatic and bilateral relations for the first time on 1 May 1948.

Throughout most of the Cold War, the Soviet Union’s relations with Pakistan saw ups and downs. From 1947 to the 1950s, the Soviet Union had reasonably healthy and robust relations with Pakistan. They further improved in the mid-1970s.

Russia and Pakistan conducted their first-ever joint military drills in 2016. Also, Pakistan and Russia struck an agreement for the Pakistan Stream Gas pipeline from Karachi to Kasur in December 2016 and agreed on a price.

Pakistan has also allowed Russia access to the Arabian Sea through Gwadar Port. Pakistan marked the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations with Russia on May 1, 2018.

Floods in Pakistan

According to the most recent government estimates, Pakistan has been battered by historic monsoon downpours, which have flooded a third of the nation, an area the size of the United Kingdom, and killed about 1,600 people.

Over seven million people have been displaced, many of whom are living in improvised tents without mosquito protection and frequently with minimal access to clean drinking water or washing facilities.

Pakistan has been inundated by heavy monsoon rainfall since mid-June 2022, causing the country’s worst flooding in a decade.

The floods have affected more than 33 million people and destroyed or damaged more than 1 million homes, as per Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA). Tens of thousands of square kilometers of the country were swamped by flooding.

The worst flooding was along the Indus River in Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan, and Sindh. Balochistan and Sindh have gotten five to six times their 30-year average rainfall so far this year. The majority of it fell during the summer monsoon rains.

Moreover, over 150 bridges and 3,500 kilometers (2,200 miles) of roads have been devastated across the country. Aside from that, more than 700,000 cattle have been gone, as have 2 million acres of crops and orchards.