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Afghans urgently need humanitarian relief: PM Imran

22 Jan, 2022
Prime Minister Imran Khan says the world must help Afghanistan. File photo
Prime Minister Imran Khan says the world must help Afghanistan. File photo

Prime Minister Imran Khan has called upon the international community to provide immediate humanitarian relief to the millions of Afghans who are on the brink of starvation.

The humanitarian situation in Afghanistan has deteriorated drastically since the Taliban's takeover. International aid came to a sudden halt and the United States has frozen $9.5 billion in Afghan central bank assets held overseas.

Hunger now threatens 23 million Afghans, or 55% of the population, according to the United Nations, which says it needs $5 billion from donor countries this year to address the humanitarian crisis in the country.

Talks between the Taliban and Western officials will open in Oslo on Sunday on human rights and humanitarian aid as a poverty crisis deepens.

In a tweet on Saturday, the PM said that there is an "urgency and obligation for the international community under the unanimously adopted UN principle of Responsibility To Protect".

Since the Taliban's takeover in August last year, Pakistan has appealed to the international community and relief agencies to provide aid at this critical juncture to avert economic collapse and to save precious lives in Afghanistan.

The 3rd meeting of the Apex Committee on Afghanistan presided over by PM Imran Khan vowed that Pakistan will not abandon Afghans in their time of need.

The prime minister directed the authorities concerned to explore bilateral cooperation with friendly countries as well to stave off humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan by exporting qualified and trained manpower especially in medical, IT, finance, and accounting.

He also directed to extend cooperation in the fields of railways, minerals, pharmaceuticals, and media to help in Afghanistan’s rehabilitation and development.

This story was first published in Business Recorder on Jan 22, 2022