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World Food Program seeks USD 2.6 bn to address humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan

News Agencies | Updated on: 2 February 2022, 9:28 IST

World Food Programme (WFP) on Tuesday announced that it needs urgent funding of USD 2.6 billion to boost operations for 8.7 million starving Afghans as the freezing winter is deteriorating the situation.

Communication chief of WFP in Afghanistan Shelley Thakral said that this was a race against time and that she was worried about not being able to keep up, reported The Khaama Press.

"We do not have enough funds and we are asking for USD 2.6 billion to scale up as we must in 2022 - that's about 30 cents of a US dollar per person we need to reach per day. We're currently nowhere close to this," said Thakral in a video call to Herat.

Thakral said that over half of the Afghan population suffering from food insecurity while 8.7 million people are at risk of starvation.

The chief of communication also expressed concern about electricity blackout in Afghanistan and that people do not have money to buy wood or fuel, reported The Khaama Press.

"Mothers are telling me that most of the time we decide who to eat and who doesn't have to and most of the time that is the mother who chooses not to eat," said Thakral.

She also said that there are fewer labour opportunities and that industries are stalled that have obliged people to sell their home items, reported The Khaama Press.

The humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan has led the Afghan people to sell their children and parts of their bodies to survive.

Afghanistan is struggling with drought, a pandemic, an economic collapse, and the effects of years of conflict. Some 24 million people are experiencing acute food insecurity. More than half the population will be facing famine this winter and 97 per cent of the population could fall below the poverty line this year.


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First published: 2 February 2022, 9:28 IST