Hollywood star Angelina Jolie has arrived in Pakistan to support the victims of the historic floods, which have affected more than 33 million people.
Television footage from Pakistani media shows Jolie, a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), arriving at an airport in Karachi, the capital of southern Sindh province, where floods have killed 692 people in the past three months.
The climate crisis has led to catastrophic flooding in the country, with the death toll now at 1,559, including 551 children and 318 women. Officials have warned that it could take “up to six months for the floodwaters to recede” in the worst-hit areas.
Jolie reportedly visited the flood-hit areas in one of the worst-hit regions of Dadu, where water-borne diseases have also caused nearly 300 deaths since July, and spoke to people about their needs.
According to the International Rescue Committee, a prominent international aid group, Jolie is visiting Pakistan to support communities affected by the devastating floods.
“Jolie is visiting to witness and gain an understanding of the situation, and to hear from people directly affected about their needs and about measures to prevent such suffering in the future,” the IRC said in a statement.
“Jolie, who previously visited victims of the 2010 Pakistan floods and 2005 earthquake, will visit IRC emergency operations and local organizations helping displaced people, including Afghan refugees.”
The visit comes as Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif is in New York for the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly, where he will highlight the damage caused by climate change-induced flooding in the impoverished country.
Pakistan has suffered more than $30bn (£26.5bn) worth of damage from the floods, which have been attributed by scientists to the man-made climate crisis.
Pakistan, which has contributed less than 1 percent of global carbon emissions, is one of the most vulnerable to the effects of the climate crisis and has demanded that rich countries pay climate compensation.
Meanwhile, an outbreak of waterborne and viral diseases such as malaria, dengue fever, diarrhea and skin infections has overwhelmed the system across the provinces as several areas remain under water.