As the already critical economic situation in Afghanistan was hit harder by a massive earthquake that killed over 1,000 people, India sent another consignment of wheat in aid to Kabul. With the latest consignment of 3,000 MT wheat being sent, India, in partnership with the World Food Programme (WFP), successfully completed the shipment of 33,500 MTs of wheat to the crisis-hit country. In May, India delivered 2,000 MTs of wheat as humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan via the Attar-Wagah border.
Informing about the latest consignment, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said, “India sent the next shipment of 3000 MTs of wheat today to Afghanistan. Our commitment to provide humanitarian assistance to the Afghan people remains steadfast. As on date, India has successfully completed shipment of 33,500 MTs of wheat to Afghanistan in partnership with WFP.”
India sent next shipment of 3000 MTs of wheat today to Afghanistan.
Our commitment to provide humanitarian assistance to the Afghan people remains steadfast.
As on date, India has successfully completed shipment of 33,500 MTs of wheat to Afghanistan in partnership with WFP. pic.twitter.com/YP8L23C1uV
— Arindam Bagchi (@MEAIndia) June 25, 2022
‘Half of Afghanistan facing hunger’
As per estimates from international agencies and aid groups, over nine million people are on the brink of starvation in Afghanistan, The Associated Press reported. Additionally, 23 million people – more than half of the country’s population – are facing extreme food scarcity. Apart from the compounding misery of COVID-19, drought and collapsing healthcare, freezing temperatures have forced people to sell personal belongings to buy food and burn furniture for warmth in freezing winters.
According to AP, people are even selling their children to meet the basic need of food and shelter. The crises, which even existed before the Taliban’s capture of the country, exacerbated further post the Talibani rule as the doors of international financial assistance closed, citing the lack of recognition of the Islamist regime. However, observing the critical humanitarian situation, the US last month announced $308 million in aid to Afghanistan through the UN organisation and is working with the World Bank to provide additional help.
Relief materials reach quake-hit regions in Afghanistan
A 6.1 magnitude earthquake struck Afghanistan on June 22, killing at least 1,150 and injuring over 1,500. The rescuers overseeing operations have, however, predicted that the death toll may rise in the days to come. At least 121 children were among the deceased, Mohamed Ayoya, Representative for UN Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF).
The Taliban regime is struggling to make ends meet for its population struck by the most deadly natural calamity in years, The Associated Press reported. In addition, the heavy downpour has made it difficult for relief workers to access worst-hit districts in eastern Afghanistan. On the bright side, most search operations were completed by Wednesday and UN humanitarian workers rushed to aid Taliban rescuers to retrieve those stuck under dire conditions.
Meanwhile, critically needed items have arrived in Kabul to be distributed among 4,200 survivors in Giyan, Bermal, Zerok, and Nika districts in the Patrika and Khost provinces. The UN Humanitarian aid workers set up three supply hubs in three districts to expedite the delivery process.