For two years, Afghans have lived under the Taliban regime. Nearly 29 million people need help. According to experts, the largest humanitarian crisis on the planet is taking place in Afghanistan. NGOs ask the world community not to forget the people of this country.
Two years after the Taliban came to power in Afghanistan, humanitarian aid needs across the country have increased dramatically. However, insufficient funding is the biggest obstacle to sustaining and expanding the humanitarian response, putting populations in need of help at risk.
Nearly 29 million Afghans need help – IRC
These are data from the International Rescue Committee (IRC). This non-governmental organization helps people affected by humanitarian crises, including climate, to survive, recover and rebuild their lives.
The IRC report on Afghanistan indicates that the country has one of the highest rates of malnutrition in the world, affecting almost 3.2 million children and 840,000 pregnant and lactating mothers.
Salma Ben Aissa, International Rescue Committee (IRC): “In fact, the need for humanitarian aid in terms of the number of poor people in need has always existed. And it continues now, and it has increased dramatically in the last two years. And we see, as We mentioned in our report, that we are talking about 28.8 million people in need. That is a 60% increase from 2021. This is now the highest level of need in the world.”
The IRC works in many towns in 12 provinces of Afghanistan, and also supports Afghan refugees in neighboring countries, including those who have resettled in the United States.
Not enough funds to help Afghans
According to Neil Turner, director of the Norwegian Refugee Council in Afghanistan, funding is currently the main problem.
Neil Turner**, Norwegian Refugee Council:** “Many donors are concerned about Afghanistan, and I think my message to them would be that we can be principled in Afghanistan. Obviously, our task as an independent and neutral humanitarian organization is only to take care of the needs of the people. We are in a position to do that. But there are a number of donors who have cut funding to Afghanistan or are concerned about whether those funds are really reaching the people who need them. And I would like to say: we can work , we can do it, the needs are great, and aid must flow adequately through organizations like the Norwegian Refugee Council.”
The situation of women in Afghanistan worsens day by day
According to a report by UN Women France, Afghanistan is today the most repressive country in the world for women. Currently, 13.8 million women and girls need humanitarian aid to survive in this country.
80% of Afghan girls and young women of school age do not attend educational centers. High rates of depression and suicide have been recorded, especially among adolescents who cannot continue their studies. Experts estimate that keeping girls out of school could cost the economy up to $5.4 billion.
Today, the situation is more than dramatic. The de facto authorities have cut spending on social services by 81% in 2022 and continue to restrict aid.
Human rights experts note that the systematic denial of Afghan women’s rights and freedoms could amount to gender-based persecution, constituting a crime against humanity.
Women are victims of sexual, psychological, economic and administrative violence. Their freedom of movement is restricted. They are not allowed to study or work, even in humanitarian organizations, which undermines relief efforts.
Carlotta Gradin, Vice President of UN Women France: “Since April 4, 2023, Afghan women have been prohibited from working with the UN and its agencies in Afghanistan. This has an extraordinary negative impact because it was women, for the most part, who they were part of the NGOs that came to help people. This means that now the aid does not reach the population.”
UN Women is one of the few agencies left in Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover.
**Carlotta Gradin, Vice President of UN Women France: “**We’ve_been_there for more than ten years, so we’ve been able to be in contact with the civil society associations present on the ground. And that’s why the regional office of UN Women doesn’t he wanted to leave during the takeover of Kabul, but to stay there to help women in dire need”._
Non-governmental humanitarian organizations recall that Afghanistan is facing the biggest humanitarian crisis on the planet and ask the world community not to forget the Afghan people.
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