Accessibility links

Breaking News

Death Toll From Pakistan Heat Wave Tops 700

A man uses a hand-held fan to cool down his son, while waiting for their turn for a medical checkup, outside the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Center in Karachi on June 23.

Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has called for emergency measures as the death toll from a three-day heat wave in southern Pakistan reached nearly 700.

The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) said on June 23 that it had received orders from Sharif to take immediate action.

An NDMA official was quoted as saying heatstroke treatment centers would be established at all hospitals across the southern province of Sindh.

The majority of deaths occurred in the port city of Karachi, where temperatures hit 45 degrees Celsius at the weekend, while several other deaths occurred in other parts of southern Sindh Province.

The deaths come a month after neighboring India suffered the second-deadliest heat wave in its history, with more than 2,000 deaths.

Semi Jamali, a doctor at Karachi's largest hospital, said they had treated about 3,000 patients suffering from heatstroke.

In Karachi, a city of 20 million people, electricity shortages crippled the water supply system, hampering the pumping of millions of gallons of water to consumers.

Based on reporting by AFP and dpa