Ban Ki-moon: Pakistan floods are 'heart wrenching'



UN chief Ban Ki-moon today pledged to speed up international aid for as many as 20 million people hit by Pakistan's floods, warning that the country's worst humanitarian crisis was far from over. The United Nations has appealed for $460 million (Dh1.68bn) to deal with the immediate aftermath of the floods but has warned that billions will be required in the long term with villages, businesses, crops and infrastructure wiped out. Pakistan's weak civilian government has appealed to the international community to help it cope with the challenges of a crisis that Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has compared to the 1947 partition of the sub-continent. Mr Ban held talks with Pakistani leaders and flew with President Asif Ali Zardari over some of the worst affected areas of central province Punjab.

"I'm here to urge the world to step up their generous support for Pakistan," Mr Ban told a joint news conference, with Zardari saying he would never forget "heart wrenching" scenes of destruction he had witnessed. Charities have complained that relief for those affected by the worst natural disaster in Pakistan's history was lagging far behind what was needed, with six to eight million dependent on humanitarian aid to survive. The UN secretary general said a possible 20 million, or one in 10 Pakistanis were directly or indirectly affected by the disaster and that one fifth of the country was ravaged by floods. "This disaster is far from over. The rains are still falling and could continue for weeks. "The United Nations and international community and international humanitarian community are moving as fast as we can to help the government deliver desperately needed humanitarian assistance," he said. Mr Ban said he would report back to the UN General Assembly on Thursday and discussions would continue on how to provide funds beyond the 460 million earmarked for an initial 90 days. Scuffles broke out near the southern city of Sukkur on Sunday, when dozens of flood survivors angrily protested against the authorities over a lack of food and facilities as they struggle to survive, police and witnesses said. Aid agencies were monitoring the risk of "a second wave" of deaths induced by the floods in the shape of water-borne diseases. The United Nations has confirmed at least one cholera case and said 36,000 people were reportedly suffering from acute diarrhoea. Mr Ban announced a further 10 million dollars from the UN central emergency response fund, making a total of 27 million dollars since the beginning of the crisis and said "as the waters recede, we must move quickly". The UN estimates that 1,600 have died in the floods. *AFP

COMPANY PROFILE

Company: Eco Way
Started: December 2023
Founder: Ivan Kroshnyi
Based: Dubai, UAE
Industry: Electric vehicles
Investors: Bootstrapped with undisclosed funding. Looking to raise funds from outside

Coming soon

Torno Subito by Massimo Bottura

When the W Dubai – The Palm hotel opens at the end of this year, one of the highlights will be Massimo Bottura’s new restaurant, Torno Subito, which promises “to take guests on a journey back to 1960s Italy”. It is the three Michelinstarred chef’s first venture in Dubai and should be every bit as ambitious as you would expect from the man whose restaurant in Italy, Osteria Francescana, was crowned number one in this year’s list of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants.

Akira Back Dubai

Another exciting opening at the W Dubai – The Palm hotel is South Korean chef Akira Back’s new restaurant, which will continue to showcase some of the finest Asian food in the world. Back, whose Seoul restaurant, Dosa, won a Michelin star last year, describes his menu as,  “an innovative Japanese cuisine prepared with a Korean accent”.

Dinner by Heston Blumenthal

The highly experimental chef, whose dishes are as much about spectacle as taste, opens his first restaurant in Dubai next year. Housed at The Royal Atlantis Resort & Residences, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal will feature contemporary twists on recipes that date back to the 1300s, including goats’ milk cheesecake. Always remember with a Blumenthal dish: nothing is quite as it seems. 

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: SmartCrowd
Started: 2018
Founder: Siddiq Farid and Musfique Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech / PropTech
Initial investment: $650,000
Current number of staff: 35
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Various institutional investors and notable angel investors (500 MENA, Shurooq, Mada, Seedstar, Tricap)

Cricket World Cup League 2 Fixtures

Saturday March 5, UAE v Oman, ICC Academy (all matches start at 9.30am)

Sunday March 6, Oman v Namibia, ICC Academy

Tuesday March 8, UAE v Namibia, ICC Academy

Wednesday March 9, UAE v Oman, ICC Academy

Friday March 11, Oman v Namibia, Sharjah Cricket Stadium

Saturday March 12, UAE v Namibia, Sharjah Cricket Stadium

UAE squad

Ahmed Raza (captain), Chirag Suri, Muhammad Waseem, CP Rizwan, Vriitya Aravind, Asif Khan, Basil Hameed, Rohan Mustafa, Kashif Daud, Zahoor Khan, Junaid Siddique, Karthik Meiyappan, Akif Raja, Rahul Bhatia

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: Xpanceo

Started: 2018

Founders: Roman Axelrod, Valentyn Volkov

Based: Dubai, UAE

Industry: Smart contact lenses, augmented/virtual reality

Funding: $40 million

Investor: Opportunity Venture (Asia)

SPECS

Engine: 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8
Power: 750hp at 7,500rpm
Torque: 800Nm at 5,500rpm
Transmission: 7 Speed dual-clutch auto
Top speed: 332kph
Fuel consumption: 12.2L/100km
On sale: Year end
Price: From Dh1,430,000 (coupe); From Dh1,566,000 (Spider)

MATCH INFO

Uefa Champions League semi-finals, first leg
Liverpool v Roma

When: April 24, 10.45pm kick-off (UAE)
Where: Anfield, Liverpool
Live: BeIN Sports HD
Second leg: May 2, Stadio Olimpico, Rome

Kill

Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat

Starring: Lakshya, Tanya Maniktala, Ashish Vidyarthi, Harsh Chhaya, Raghav Juyal

Rating: 4.5/5

The Witcher - season three

Director: Various

Stars:
Henry Cavill, Freya Allan, Anya Chalotra

Rating:
3/5

Roll of Honour, men’s domestic rugby season

West Asia Premiership
Champions: Dubai Tigers
Runners up: Bahrain

UAE Premiership
Champions: Jebel Ali Dragons
Runners up: Dubai Hurricanes

UAE Division 1
Champions: Dubai Sharks
Runners up: Abu Dhabi Harlequins II

UAE Division 2
Champions: Dubai Tigers III
Runners up: Dubai Sharks II

Dubai Sevens
Champions: Dubai Tigers
Runners up: Dubai Hurricanes

Politics in the West
Dates for the diary

To mark Bodytree’s 10th anniversary, the coming season will be filled with celebratory activities:

  • September 21 Anyone interested in becoming a certified yoga instructor can sign up for a 250-hour course in Yoga Teacher Training with Jacquelene Sadek. It begins on September 21 and will take place over the course of six weekends.
  • October 18 to 21 International yoga instructor, Yogi Nora, will be visiting Bodytree and offering classes.
  • October 26 to November 4 International pilates instructor Courtney Miller will be on hand at the studio, offering classes.
  • November 9 Bodytree is hosting a party to celebrate turning 10, and everyone is invited. Expect a day full of free classes on the grounds of the studio.
  • December 11 Yogeswari, an advanced certified Jivamukti teacher, will be visiting the studio.
  • February 2, 2018 Bodytree will host its 4th annual yoga market.

Director: Nag Ashwin

Starring: Prabhas, Saswata Chatterjee, Deepika Padukone, Amitabh Bachchan, Shobhana

Rating: ★★★★

The biog

Name: Fareed Lafta

Age: 40

From: Baghdad, Iraq

Mission: Promote world peace

Favourite poet: Al Mutanabbi

Role models: His parents 

The years Ramadan fell in May

1987

1954

1921

1888