GENEVA ( Associated Press) — The United Nations on Tuesday appealed for a record $5 billion to help Afghanistan and its neighboring countries, warning half of the country faces acute hunger, millions of children out of school and Farmers are battling against a drought – Afghanistan stagnated by decades of conflict since the Taliban takeover in August.
The appeal from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and the refugee agency UNHCR reflects the world body’s bid to help distressed citizens inside a country now run by a terrorist group that has been attacked by several Western donor countries. fought once – and are still protesting. The US-led international coalition left Afghanistan in chaotic scenes as the Taliban took control of the country and returned to power in the summer.
The OCHA warned of “catastrophe” coming to Afghanistan and said that 23 million people are in need of humanitarian aid – or more than half the country’s population. It says that if one million children below the age of 5 years do not get assistance, they will face severe and acute malnutrition.
“We need to get food to the families where they live. “We need to get the seeds to farmers where they plow,” said OCHA chief Martin Griffiths. “We need to get health services in clinics in locations across the country, and we need security services for everyone who wants to return home.”
“This is the largest appeal for humanitarian aid ever to a single country, and it is three times the amount needed and actually fundraising in 2021,” he said.
The joint appeal calls for $4.4 billion for OCHA and its allies, as well as $623 million for the refugee agency to help more than 6 million Afghans who have fled abroad, or the total population of Afghanistan. is about 15 percent. The UNHCR said other border crossings continued, with an estimated 175,000 returning to the country since the Taliban takeover.
“The reality is that people go back because the situation becomes more secure,” said UNCHR chief Filippo Grandi. “The conflict between the Taliban and the previous government is over. And it has opened up some space for security, which I think we need to take advantage of. But to do that, we need the resources that are part of this appeal.”
Grundy emphasized the aid’s effectiveness, saying it allows “a space for dialogue with the Taliban to be invaluable” around issues that are important to many donors – such as women’s rights, for girls. School education, and the rights of minorities, which are discussed every day with the new leaders of the country.
“This is the place that we need to protect, because at the moment, the political arena is a little behind,” he said.
The United Nations has repeatedly said that Afghans are facing one of the world’s fastest growing humanitarian crises, with the economy “free fall” and the rights of women and girls “under attack”. According to the World Bank, if the funding is achieved, it would amount to about one-quarter of the country’s total economic output in 2020, which is more than $20 billion.