Advertisement
Friday, Sep 30, 2022
Outlook.com
Outlook.com

Afghanistan: UN Warns Of 'Fast Unraveling Crisis'

Humanitarian workers are racing against time to deliver aid as winter looms in Afghanistan, UN officials told DW. The situation on the ground is already desperate and 'looks like it's going to get worse'.

Afghanistan: UN Warns Of 'Fast Unraveling Crisis'
UN has warned that 20% of Afghanistan's 38 million people are already near famine.(File photo) | AP
Afghanistan: UN Warns Of 'Fast Unraveling Crisis'
outlookindia.com
2021-11-24T16:16:07+05:30

Rising hunger and stalled aid deliveries are creating a "fast unraveling crisis" in Afghanistan, UNICEF warned on Tuesday.

"Around half of the country — 23 million people — are in need of aid, so the scale is extraordinary and it's a fast unraveling crisis to all," Samantha Mort, the chief of communications for UNICEF Afghanistan, told DW in an interview.

Aid agencies, including UNICEF, are racing against time to deliver aid before the onset of winter.

"UNICEF is bringing in aid through chartered flights and through the border with Pakistan so we're getting aid in, but every day it's getting colder," she said.

"There's snow already in the mountains, rural areas are being cut off and it's really a race against time to pre-position those supplies before they're inaccessible," she stressed.

'Humanitarian catastrophe'

Last week, the UN's special representative for Afghanistan warned that the country is "on the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe," with 22% of the population of 38 million already near famine and another 36% facing acute food insecurity — hunger on a daily basis — mainly because people cannot afford food.

"We've got poverty levels that are off the charts and that means that families are being forced to make desperate decisions," Mort said, adding that parents must take children out of school and make them work.

"Families are being forced to exchange children for dowries in early marriage. We're seeing higher rates of child recruitment by armed groups, so children are extremely vulnerable," she added.

Peter Maurer, president of the International Committee of the Red Cross, said last week that aid groups are struggling to pay doctors, nurses and others on the ground because there is currently no way to transfer salaries to bank accounts in Afghanistan.

Afghanistan's economy is estimated to have contracted by 40% since the Taliban took control in August. The UN has warned that the country's collapsing economy is also increasing the risk of extremism.

Afghanistan on track to become 'largest humanitarian appeal in history'

Richard Trenchard, the representative for the UN's Food and Agricultural Organization in Afghanistan, has warned that the situation in the country "desperate."

"What's really worrying us is that it looks like it's going to get worse," he told DW, adding that acute hunger has spread from rural areas to nine out of 10 of Afghanistan's largest cities.

"Next year I think the humanitarian community here will be asking for well over $4 billion [€3.6 billion] — that would be the largest humanitarian appeal, I think, in history of any country," he said.

Advertisement

Outlook Newsletters

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Read More from Outlook

Lament Of Separation: Songs Of Habba Khatun, Last Queen Of Kashmir, Still Echo In Valley

Lament Of Separation: Songs Of Habba Khatun, Last Queen Of Kashmir, Still Echo In Valley

In happy times and sad, Habba Khatun’s sensuous songs make both young and old emotional. With the never-ending conflict bringing tragedies to every doorstep, Habba’s lyrics of separation amplify their mourning.

How Indian Laws Govern People’s Right To Love And Live

How Indian Laws Govern People’s Right To Love And Live

In India, only those relationships between a man and a woman are considered to be legitimate when there is a marriage between the two.

Kohli Quits Test Captaincy, Leaves Leadership Vacuum

Kohli Quits Test Captaincy, Leaves Leadership Vacuum

Virat Kohli, 33, had recently stepped down as India's T20I captain and was subsequently removed as the ODI captain.

UP Elections 2022: How Congress Is Harnessing Power Of 'Persecuted' Women To Counter BJP

UP Elections 2022: How Congress Is Harnessing Power Of 'Persecuted' Women To Counter BJP

A Mahila Congress leader, who is the face of the ‘Ladki Hoon, Lad Sakti Hoon’ campaign, however, has accused the party of anti-women bias after she was denied a ticket.

Advertisement