Germany, US Warn of Looming Afghan Humanitarian Crisis

Published September 9th, 2021 - 06:15 GMT
Afghanistan
Afghanistan (Twitter)
Highlights
"According to the United Nations, some 50% of the (Afghan) population is in need of humanitarian assistance," the top US diplomat said.

Germany and the US on Wednesday warned of a looming humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan after the Taliban's takeover last month resulted in the exodus of aid workers and subsequent funding cut.

"A severe humanitarian crisis is emerging before our eyes that we must absolutely avoid," German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said.

His remarks came during a joint news conference alongside visiting US Secretary of State Antony Blinken at the US air base in Ramstein following an international video conference on the future of Afghanistan.

Maas urged for expedited efforts to provide humanitarian assistance to the Afghan people, especially through the UN, adding that this was not only a "moral imperative but also a question of regional stability."

Blinken echoed the remarks by Maas, saying the US will "continue to provide humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan."

"According to the United Nations, some 50% of the (Afghan) population is in need of humanitarian assistance," the top US diplomat said.

Both ministers called on the Taliban government to allow access to humanitarian aid via Kabul's airport.

International aid agencies have raised the alarm about an "impending humanitarian crisis" in Afghanistan, with medical charity Doctors Without Borders saying the country's vulnerable healthcare system was facing a "potential collapse".

On Monday, the UN appealed for almost $200 million in extra funding for lifesaving aid in Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, Blinken reiterated that the US would "judge the caretaker government (in Afghanistan) by its actions."

"The international community has made clear its expectations. The Afghan people deserve an inclusive government," he said.

Blinken added any legitimacy and support for the new interim Afghan government "needs to be earned."

The EU has criticized Afghanistan's new government after the Taliban named ministers whose inclusion triggered serios doubts over its willingness to meet international conditions for diplomatic recognition and humanitarian assistance.

The interim government announcement on Tuesday included several Taliban leaders targeted by UN sanctions and some people on the FBI's most wanted list.

This article has been adapted from its original source.


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