‘Keep the world’s attention on Afghanistan’ warns EU humanitarian chief
Story | 15 June 2022
A humanitarian crisis of incredible proportions has grown even more complex and severe since the Taliban took control. Job losses, lack of cash and soaring prices are creating a new class of hungry in Afghanistan. 22.8 million Afghans – or more than half the population– are not consuming enough food.
The country is on the brink of economic collapse, with the local currency at an all-time low and food prices on the rise.
Acute malnutrition is above emergency thresholds in 25 out of 34 provinces, and is expected to worsen, with almost half of children under 5 and a quarter of pregnant and breastfeeding women needing life-saving nutrition support in the next 12 months.
As winter approaches, getting food into the country and prepositioning it at strategic locations is now the most urgent task for WFP. Once the snow sets in, roads will be cut off and communities stranded. This lean season, WFP food assistance will be the only lifeline for many Afghan families.
The international community needs to step up to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. WFP urgently needs US$220 million a month to help people in need in Afghanistan.
WFP provides unconditional, fortified and nutritionally-balanced food assistance to people in need in the country. Since the beginning of 2021, WFP has provided 15 million people with food and nutrition support. Our targeted supplementary feeding programme assisted over 500,000 pregnant and breastfeeding women and over 1 million children under 5 suffering from or at risk of malnutrition.
The WFP-managed United Nations Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) is providing a regional air bridge linking Pakistan and Tajikistan to Kabul, and domestic services across the country to transport humanitarian responders to the frontlines of the crisis. UNHAS has operated 2,497 flights in 2021, serving 13,577 passengers from 153 humanitarian organisations.
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