Aid agencies 'running against the clock' in Nepal

By Alys Francis 18 May 2015

Even before the earthquake, Nepal’s terrain is already very challenging. Eight of the 12 highest peaks in the world are in the country, which is landlocked and have very few large airports that can handle aircraft delivering aid. So how is the U.N. and other agencies on the ground working around these challenges?

Aid workers are racing against the clock to deliver relief to hundreds of thousands of people in Nepal who remain homeless three weeks after a deadly 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck April 25, followed by numerous aftershocks.

The death toll has climbed above 8,500, with at least 20,000 injured. And it’s expected to rise further, with more believed to be buried in debris sent tumbling again by the second, 7.3-magnitude temblor that struck May 12.

The second quake “compounded an already seriously distressing situation,” according to James McGoldrick, the United Nations’ humanitarian coordinator for Nepal. High levels of damage in Dolakha district have now added to the already massive need for shelter — with over half a million houses wrecked across the country.

There’s been widespread criticism aid has come too slowly and is yet to reach isolated villages.

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About the author

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Alys Francis

Alys Francis is a freelance journalist covering development and other news in South Asia for international media outlets. Based in India, she travels widely around the region and has covered major events, including national elections in India and Nepal. She is interested in how technology is aiding development and rapidly altering societies.


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