A supplied image shows locals inspecting a landslide and damage to a road located near the township of Tabubil after an quake that struck Papua New Guinea's Southern Highlands, February 26, 2018.
Almost 1.5 lakh people are in need of urgent emergency supplies in Papua New Guinea, a week after a 7.6-magnitude quake struck the country, Reuters reported on Sunday.
Apart from the death toll, around 1.43 lakh people have been affected by the natural disaster and 17,000 people have been displaced due to partial or full destruction of their homes, reported AFP quoting Red Cross figures.
Regmi explained that water and sanitation were major concerns for local communities.
"UNICEF is working tirelessly to do whatever it takes to ensure the health and safety of children and families in the Highlands of Papua New Guinea", said Karin Hulshof, UNICEF East Asia & Pacific Regional Director.
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Relief efforts are slowly being expanded, with millions of dollars in aid pledged by the government, ExxonMobil and Australian energy producers Oil Search and Santos, which are involved in the gas project.
Australia, New Zealand and the Red Cross have all pledged aid, though reaching the remote area has proven challenging as forbidding terrain, bad weather, as well as damaged roads and runways have delayed aid efforts.
"The challenge is road access, it's still not accessible to trucks and four-wheel-drives", Mr Regmi said.
Prime Minister Peter O'Neill said last week the shutdown of the gas plant would have a "huge impact" on the economy, which is heavily dependent on its natural resources.
"From the United Nations in Papua New Guinea, we would like to extend our sympathies to those affected and to those who have lost their loved ones", said UN Resident Coordinator, Gianluca Rampolla. It was an "unprecedented event for the country" and the firm, he said.