The death toll in Pakistan from the October 8th earthquake has risen sharply -- to 38-thousand. As Pakistani leaders announced the new figure on Saturday, they also appealed for materials to shelter homeless victims of the quake suffering through a day of cold rain and facing a Himalayan winter.
Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz said he needs many tents to shelter some two million people who lost their homes in the earthquake. Rain Saturday soaked the homeless and interfered with relief operations, grounding helicopters and raising fears of mudslides.
Numerous towns and villages in remote areas have yet to receive relief supplies, and officials say they still do not know the full extent of the disaster. Speaking to reporters, Mr. Aziz quoted United Nations officials as saying it will take 10 years to rebuild Pakistan. But he insisted his country would be able to do so faster.
Buddhist leader the Dalai Lama has joined those offering financial aid to the region. The Tibetan leader-in-exile is donating tens of thousands of dollars to Pakistan and India.