Trucks with humanitarian aid arrive in Afghanistan as millions risk starvation

  • Date of Publication : 3/10/2021 at 09:36 GMT
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Trucks humanitarian aid Afghanistan Turkish turkey

Trucks carrying humanitarian aid arrived on Saturday in Afghanistan, where poverty and hunger have spiralled following the cutting off of international aid, and the freezing of foreign assets.

The Turkish Red Crescent in collaboration with the Pakistan Red Crescent Society sent humanitarian assistance that will benefit up to 16,000 people in Afghanistan, Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) officials said.

Two trucks carrying rice, flour, cooking oil, sugar and other food items were handed over to Afghan officials at Pakistan’s Torkham gate by Turkish Red Crescent officials.

Afghan Red Crescent official, Ghulam Habib Hasan, thanked Turkey and Pakistan for the aid, saying it comes at the time when Afghan people need it most.

The aid will go to internally displaced Afghans who fled their homes following the IEA’s takeover, Turkish Red Crescent President Kerem Kinik said on Friday.

Half a million people have been displaced in Afghanistan in recent months, according to U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi, a number which would grow if health services, schools and the economy break down.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) warned on Thursday that Afghanistan could be facing a collapse of health services and mass hunger in the coming months.

According to the IFRC, acute food shortages fuelled by serious drought, lack of cash and displacement, the COVID-19 pandemic and crippled health services have converged on the people of Afghanistan, with some 18 million Afghans in urgent need of humanitarian assistance.

Since the IEA took over Afghanistan on August 15, the country has been plunged into economic crisis as the nation’s international assistance has been largely cut off.

Billions of dollars in central bank assets held abroad have also been frozen, which has put pressure on the banking system and prevented most transactions involving U.S. dollars.

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