UN: 6.3 Million Afghans in Need of Humanitarian Aids

(Last Updated On: August 21, 2016 6:08 pm)

afghan-idpUN and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in World Humanitarian Day in Kabul on Saturday said that the civilians continued to bear the brunt of a conflict that has grown in intensity and geographic scope, affecting the lives of at least 6.3 million Afghans.

Over 210,000 people have been newly internally displaced by conflict in 2016 alone – some 1,000 people per day.

Commemorating the World Humanitarian Day in Kabul, UN high-level officials have urged for the increased international partnerships to address the root causes of humanitarian needs, reduce communities’ vulnerability to disasters and raise awareness of Afghanistan’s protracted humanitarian crisis.

UN Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Partnerships with the Middle East and Central Asia Rashid Khalikov said: “Nearly a third of the people of Afghanistan are in need of humanitarian aid and this continues year after year. It is critical that the UN works to reinforce the humanitarian partnerships that can support and enhance the response to people’s immediate and longer term needs.”

UN Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Partnerships with the Middle East and Central Asia Rashid Khalikov said: “Nearly a third of the people of Afghanistan are in need of humanitarian aid and this continues year after year. It is critical that the UN works to reinforce the humanitarian partnerships that can support and enhance the response to people’s immediate and longer term needs.”

A 2016 mid-year UN report recorded a total number of 5,166 civilian casualties, the largest since 2009. One third of the casualties were children. The total number of civilian casualties since 2009 amounts to 63,934.

Ambassador Hesham Youssef, assistant secretary-general of OIC for humanitarian affairs, said: “It is evident to us that much more effort is needed to address the deteriorating situation in Afghanistan. This is why the OIC is exerting extensive efforts to address the escalating conflict.

“We also hope to be able to benefit from this mission in raising awareness of the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan at the international level and in our Member States with the objective of increasing their assistance and investment in sustainable development solutions for the people of Afghanistan.”

Chairman of OIC Humanitarian Funds’ Board of Trustees Sheikh Abdul Aziz al-Thani said: “With this visit marking World Humanitarian Day, and as needs continue to grow, we are looking into how the OIC Humanitarian Fund for Afghanistan can build on 15 years of presence to mobilise greater and more predictable funding for humanitarian programmes.”

UN’s Deputy Special Representative of Secretary-General Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator Mark Bowden said: “Afghanistan remains as one of the world’s most protracted crises that has led to massive levels of internal displacement.

“Each year sees more families uprooted by conflict many of whom remain displaced and at the margins of survival. In this, the first World Humanitarian day following the World Humanitarian Summit, we must make more determined efforts to live up to international commitments made in Istanbul to leave no one behind and better address the needs of displaced people…”

In the meantime, Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation said nearly 170,000 Afghans have been displaced in various parts of the country and the world since the beginning of the current year.

“The number of displaced due to war have been increased and this figure has spiked compared to the previous year. We are trying to send them aids,” said Mia Khail, deputy of Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation.

The continued conflict and displacement create recurring humanitarian emergencies which place further strain on already overstretched and insufficient basic services.

Afghanistan has the world’s second highest mortality rate for children under five and almost 3 million people are affected by malnutrition.

The deteriorating security situation severely hampers the delivery of health services and the displaced people are highly vulnerable to both diseases and malnutrition.

In addition, natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes, landslides and droughts impact on an estimated 235,000 people every year.

The current humanitarian situation is already severe and needs are increasing. The 2016 Humanitarian Response Plan, aiming to help 3.5 million people in need, is tightly focused on the most acute life-saving response to displaced people and on life-saving interventions in health and nutrition.

As of 30 June, 61 per cent – US$207 million – of the $339 million mid-year revised request have been received.

Every effort must be made to increase current levels of international humanitarian aid and at the same time invest in long-term, sustainable development solutions to address the recurrent humanitarian needs and strengthen community resilience.

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