FROM DROUGHT TO FLOODS
Earlier this year much of the nation was in the grip of a drought and heatwave, with temperatures hitting 51 degrees Celsius in Jacobabad, Sindh province.
The city is now grappling with floods that have inundated homes and swept away roads and bridges.
In Sukkur, about 75km away, residents struggled to make their way along muddy streets clogged with flood-borne debris.
“If you had come earlier the water was this high,” 24-year-old student Aqeel Ahmed told AFP, raising his hand to his chest.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif cancelled a planned trip to Britain to oversee the flood response, and ordered the army to throw every resource into relief operations.
“I have seen from the air and the devastation can’t be expressed in words,” he said on state TV after visiting Sukkur.
“The towns, villages and crops are inundated by the water. I don’t think this level of destruction has taken place before.”
A national fundraising appeal has been launched, with Pakistan’s military saying every commissioned officer would donate a month’s salary towards it.
The worst-hit areas are Balochistan and Sindh in the south and west, but almost all of Pakistan has suffered this year.
Images were circulating on social media on Friday of swollen rivers obliterating buildings and bridges built along their banks in the mountainous north.
In Chaman, the western frontier town neighbouring Afghanistan, travellers had to wade through waist-high water to cross the border after a nearby dam burst, adding to the deluge brought by rain.
Pakistan Railways said nearby Quetta, capital of Balochistan province, had been cut off and train services suspended after a key bridge was damaged by a flash flood.
Most mobile networks and internet services were down in the province, with the country’s telecoms authority calling it “unprecedented”.