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Makeshift tents for people displaced due to the floods after heavy monsoon rains in Balochistan province on Sept. 4.

Makeshift tents for people displaced due to the floods after heavy monsoon rains in Balochistan province on Sept. 4.

 Photographer: Fida Hussain/AFP/Getty Images

How Pakistan’s Catastrophic Floods Spiraled Into a Nightmare

The nation’s worst climate-induced disaster in years caused more than $10 billion in damage. Many are now questioning who should pay for the destruction.

As Pakistan’s government struggled to quell political unrest and rescue a floundering economy this summer, a humanitarian disaster took shape with frightening speed far from the power corridors of Islamabad.

Across the rugged plains of southern Pakistan, extreme flooding has killed 1,300 people since June and displaced more than half a million. Large swathes of farmland are inundated, dead animals dot the highways, and fast-moving currents have crumbled bridges. Scores of homes are underwater, with the government estimating damage at more than $10 billion.