Afghanistan Needs Access to Global Relief to Avoid Humanitarian Disaster - Rights Group

© REUTERS / Zohra BensemraA military helicopter is pictured flying over Kabul, Afghanistan November 4, 2021.REUTERS
A military helicopter is pictured flying over Kabul, Afghanistan November 4, 2021.REUTERS - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.11.2021
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WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The international community must urgently ease financial restrictions on Afghanistan that block the provision of health care, food and other essential services, threatening the lives of tens of millions, Amnesty International said in a press release.
“A combination of a suspension of foreign aid, the freezing of Afghan government assets, and international sanctions on the Taliban, have plunged a country already suffering from high poverty levels into a full-blown economic crisis,” the release said on Tuesday.
The release cited United Nations estimates that 22.8 million Afghans, over half the nation’s population, now face acute food insecurity and hunger, with at least a million children suffering from malnutrition. The United Nations also estimates than $200 million in humanitarian aid per month is needed to avert disaster.
With the Taliban remaining on lists of internationally sanctioned groups, Afghanistan’s foreign donors have moved to withhold and withdraw funding from the country following the group’s capture of Kabul in August.
In this Monday, Dec. 5, 2016 photo, an Afghan money changer counts Pakistani currency banknotes at a money exchange market in Kabul, Afghanistan. Afghans are increasingly uncertain about their future, less confident in their government and more pessimistic than before on issues such as security, corruption, and rising unemployment, according to the annual survey by the San Francisco-based Asia Foundation released on Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul) - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.11.2021
Taliban Bans Use of Foreign Currency Amid Economic Woes in Afghanistan
The Biden administration froze $9.5 billion assets of the country’s central bank. The European Union followed suit by withdrawing $1.4 billion in aid, resulting in the closure of at least 2,000 health facilities serving 30 million Afghans. In addition, International Monetary Fund has frozen Taliban access to $450 million, according to the release.
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