UN raises funds for ‘lifeline’ in Afghanistan as famine approaches

United nations The United Nations held an emergency financial appeals meeting in Geneva on Monday to raise funds for humanitarian aid AfghanistanUN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said his people “need a lifeline”.

“After decades of war, suffering and insecurity, they are probably facing their most dangerous time,” Guterres said.

After the meeting, Guterres said more than $1 billion in aid pledges had been made to Afghanistan, a large portion of which would go toward meeting Monday’s $600 million fundraising goal.

The picture painted by the Secretary-General is grim: “One in three Afghans does not know where their next meal will come from. The poverty rate is rising – and basic public services are on the verge of collapse. Hundreds of thousands of people have been forced to flee their homes.”

Moreover, he warned that “Afghanistan is facing a severe dryness The second to hit the country in four years. Many people may run out of food by the end of this month, just as winter approaches.”

after the last Taliban control A sudden end to billions of dollars in foreign aid was put in place, and the new government announced an all-male leadership team and new rules for women’s education, further isolating itself from the West, CBS News correspondent Charlie D’Agata reports from Islamabad, Pakistan. .

UN officials from several agencies said Monday that the exodus of Afghans fleeing the Taliban and the deteriorating economic conditions in the country are a major concern. United Nations High Commissioner, Filippo Grandi, Arrived in Kabul To assess the “situation of 3.5 million displaced Afghans”.

The stern warnings come as 20 United Nations agencies hope to stay and continue their humanitarian work in Afghanistan. The Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Martin Griffiths, traveled to Kabul last week to meet with the Taliban leadership on their role.

“It has reinforced our commitment to provide impartial and independent humanitarian assistance and protection to millions of people in need,” Guterres said.

These measures should include urgent assistance to help save Afghanistan’s wheat crop, to help prevent famine amid drought, Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Qu Dongyu said at a UN meeting on Monday.

President Biden’s ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas Greenfield, announced $64 million in humanitarian aid from the United States, saying the “situation is appalling.”

Thomas Greenfield cited the United Nations children’s agency, UNICEF, whose Executive Director, Henrietta Fore, predicted that one million children under the age of five could soon face severe acute malnutrition.

“One million children dying of preventable hunger is too many. An unimaginable million,” said Thomas Greenfield, adding that the new funding means the United States has provided $330 million to help Afghans this fiscal year.

She called on the international community to come together to support relief efforts and hold the Taliban accountable, acknowledging that “we have all heard reports that the Taliban are obstructing and interfering with aid.”

But she said the world must “commit to stand by humanitarian workers as they do their very important work, and intensify humanitarian action in Afghanistan so that we can save the lives of Afghans in need.”

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