Pakistan is having serious flooding in many parts of the country. On Tuesday, China sent two of its largest military cargo planes, the Y-20, with aid for the people of Pakistan.
A day after Chinese President Xi Jinping sent Pakistani President Arif Alvi a message of condolences about the floods, the plane, which could carry more than 60 tonnes of goods, took off from an airport in the Sichuan province of southwest China.
Tuesday night, the plane was meant to land in Karachi.
A Chinese foreign ministry spokesman named Zhao Lijian said that the plane will bring 3,000 tents and other aid.
Zhao was quoted at Tuesday’s regular ministry briefing as saying, “China and Pakistan have been through good times and bad times together for a long time, reaching out to each other and working together to deal with big problems like natural disasters. We are strategic partners who work together and “ironclad” friends.
Zhao said that China responded right away and would continue to help Pakistan in times of “greatly needed” disasters.
The state-run tabloid Global Times says that on Wednesday, two more Chinese planes will send another load of supplies to Pakistan.
The monsoon rains in Pakistan, which started in mid-June, have caused flooding that has affected more than 33 million people and 72 districts, according to a report from China’s Xinhua news agency on Tuesday.
According to a report from Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) that was picked up by Xinhua, the Sindh province in the south of the country has continued to be the worst-affected area, with more than 14.5 million people living in 23 of its districts.
The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) air force will send the Y-20 cargo plane to Pakistan for the second time. In response to the Covid-19 outbreak in 2020, the Y-20 made its first overseas delivery to Pakistan.
In July, six Y-20 planes flew to Afghanistan to drop off supplies after an earthquake killed at least a thousand people and forced tens of thousands to move.
Chinese news outlets CCTV said that the PLA plane delivered about 105 tonnes of help over the course of three days.