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Poland raises aid for Balkans

PR dla Zagranicy
Peter Gentle 29.05.2014 14:25
  • NFP 14 05 29 Polish flood aid for Balkans.mp3
Polish charities raise money for Balkans flood relief, as a team of Polish fireman and other services join emergency operations in one of the poorest areas of Europe.

A digger helps with cleaning up operations in the vilage Topcic Polje near the Bosnian town of Zenica 110 km from the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina of Sarajevo following the severe flooding of past days 27 May 2014. A state of emergency has been declared in Bosnia and Herzegovina due to floods caused by several days of continual rainfall EPA/FEHIIM DEMIR

At least 43 have died in Bosnia and Serbia since heavy rain fall left thousands tens of thousands homeless in the worst Balkan floods on record.

As Slawek Szefs reports almost 4 million people have been left without clean water and another problem is the threat of landslides.

These pose a much more serious threat than may appear, as the moving earth can affect some of the close to 9 and a half thousand mine fields throughout Bosnia, with potentially active explosives - a legacy of the bloody armed conflict in the Balkans in the 1990s.

Though struggling with their own problems caused by recent heavy rainfall, especially in the southern and south-western provinces of the country, Poles have show far reaching solidarity with the flood victims in the Balkans.

Money collections have also been organized by numerous NGOs in Poland, including Caritas Polska and PAH (Polish Humanitarian Organization).

And for the past week a group of 37 Polish rescuers, mainly firemen with specialist equipment, have been assisting locals in the Bosnian town of Samac, by the border with Croatia.

"Our men have been on 24 hour duty since they arrived. […] The rescuers are already very tired but the fact that we see effects and our work is appreciated gives us additional stamina,” Captain Marcin Pater told Polish Radio.

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