The stability of Pakistan is under threat in the aftermath of the its worst floods in history and the country will collapse unless the West rushes aid, cricketer-turned politician Imran Khan warned today.
On the eve of a visit to Britain to raise awareness of his country's plight, Khan argued that the world had failed to understand the true extent of the catastrophe, the worst floods in Pakistan in eight decades.
"You have 20 million hungry, angry people, you will see a weakened state. That state will not be able to maintain
40,000 troops to fight the war on terror," Tehreek-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan told The Times.
"This could bring the country down. The situation could lead to famine. It could lead to hyperinflation. It could lead to our currency breaking down. Our national cash crop, cotton, is already 20 to 30 per cent gone.
"In the floods 80 per cent of those worst-hit were subsistence farmers -- that loss is devastating to our agricultural-based economy," Khan, who has raised more than 14 million pounds for disaster relief efforts, said that global leaders had to wake up to the situation.
"This is going to change Pakistan like 9/11 changed the world. The country cannot go on as before because our corrupt, weak government has been exposed. Neither the international community nor normal people are willing to give money to them, to help us."
Although he highlighted the security implications of the disaster, Khan ridiculed Pakistani leaders for trying to
scare donor countries into believing that if they did not help, the Taliban would take advantage.
"It is cheap way to get money from our own people's misery. It is nonsense to say that people step out of a flood to pick up a gun and fight for the Taliban. The real danger comes from the greater threat: that to our country's overall stability."