The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.

Aid agencies will not leave Afghanistan

Afghanistan remains one of the world’s largest humanitarian crises with 28.3 million people in need of humanitarian assistance. Decades of conflict, extreme climate shocks, and severe economic decline characterized by high unemployment, cash shortages, and rising food prices have plunged millions into poverty. As millions of Afghans are facing with various challenges particularly poverty, the United Nations World Food Program pledged to continue its mission in Afghanistan despite any political gap. Hsiao-Wei Lee, head of the WFP in Afghanistan has said that the organization has no intention of leaving Afghanistan. “Humanitarian aid is of vital importance to the majority of vulnerable people, including women, children and people with disabilities”, Lee said in a meeting held late last week in Germany. The humanitarian crisis in this country has intensified in the past year and a half, she added” saying that the famine in Afghanistan has been prevented by humanitarian aid, millions of Afghans still suffer from food insecurity. Meanwhile, she warned about the lack of funds needed for humanitarian aid and said that the World Food Program has a funding shortfall of $900 million for the next six months. This comes amid of increasing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan as the United Nations has estimated that 19.9 million people – nearly half of Afghanistan’s population – are acutely facing food insecure, while the global food and fuel crisis makes it harder for already vulnerable households to meet their basic food needs. In response to unprecedented levels of hunger and vulnerability, the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) scaled-up humanitarian operations to reach 23 million people with emergency food, nutrition, and livelihood support in 2022 and plans to support 21 million people in 2023. In 2023, WFP requires US$2.2 billion to deliver emergency food, nutrition, and livelihood support to those in need. WFP faces a net funding shortfall of US$831 million to sustain operations between March and August 2023. Present in Afghanistan since 1963, WFP’s current Country Strategic Plan (2018-2023) has adapted to the new operating environment, providing lifesaving support to those who need it most, while continuing, where possible, to support long-term community resilience, gender, and education initiatives. It is worth mentioning that humanitarian activities were suspended in Ghor province throughout the month of February, as operational negotiations between partners and local provincial authorities of the Islamic Emirate were conducted. Approximately 88,000 people awaiting WFP food assistance were impacted. Besides, in February, WFP’s activities, except for those related to nutrition, were suspended in Badghis and Nangarhar, affecting approximately 412,000 people. Activities resumed in late February after successful negotiations with the Islamic Emirate authorities. Samiullah Momand

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The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.