UN Says 8m Affected in Nepal Earthquake

UN Says 8m Affected in Nepal EarthquakeUN Says 8m Affected in Nepal Earthquake

Eight million people have been affected by the massive earthquake in Nepal - more than a quarter of the country’s population - the United Nations says.

International aid has started arriving but there is still huge need - 1.4 million require food aid, the UN said, BBC reported.

The 7.8-magnitude quake hit Nepal on Saturday destroying buildings in Kathmandu and severely affecting rural areas across the region. The death toll has risen to more than 5,000 with more than 8,000 injured, officials say.

But Prime Minister Sushil Koirala warned the toll could reach 10,000, stressing that the government was on a “war footing.”

Nepal and surrounding areas have continued to experience aftershocks. Thousands in Kathmandu, Nepal’s capital, spent a third night outside, too afraid to go back into their houses.

Water, food and electricity are in short supply and there are fears of outbreaks of disease.

“According to initial estimations, eight million people in 39 districts have been affected, of which over two million people live in the 11 severely affected districts,” said a report from the UN Office of the Resident Coordinator.

The Nepal government has pleaded for overseas aid - everything from blankets and helicopters to doctors and drivers.