Christian Aid: the new Prime Minister must act to help Afghans survive

Emergency food aid. Image: Christian Aid

Source: Christian help

Christian Aid, challenged the next Prime Minister to end the British government’s drift and backwardness on Afghanistan.

To mark one year since Taliban forces overthrew the elected government, Christian Aid warns that it is essential that whoever becomes British Prime Minister acts to prevent the dire situation in Afghanistan from turning into a humanitarian disaster. The crisis is mainly fueled by soaring food and fuel prices due to the war in Ukraine.

The charity interviewed Afghan families in several provinces to find out how their lives have changed a year after the Taliban took over.

Quasi, a widow with seven children living in Kabul, told us how her husband was in a mob and killed by a suicide bomber last year. She cannot go to the market without a male chaperone due to recent Taliban edicts restricting women’s movements.

“We don’t have money to buy food every day. My children and I are only surviving on the little food aid provided by the village representative.”

Bibi, a 39-year-old widowed mother, used to support her family by selling dairy products from her cow, but had to sell it to pay her debts after her husband was shot dead by the Taliban.

“I dream of having a safe living room for all of us. I will face all the difficulties but I hope that my children will have a better future and will be educated. For my part, I would like to learn a new vocation so that I can work. “

Pari, has four daughters but the eldest cannot go to school after they were closed by the Taliban. Her husband was killed on his way home during a clash between Taliban and government forces.

“I take care of my deaf and blind mother, so my biggest dream is the well-being of my children. I want them to have a decent life, to eat enough and never to face my destiny.”

Subrata De, Afghanistan Country Manager, said, “Local authorities have demonstrated their priorities over the past 12 months by restricting the movement of women and enforcing female dress codes rather than saving lives from hunger. But the international community must also reflect on the sanctions it has imposed – who are we ultimately punishing and at what cost to ordinary Afghans? »

Fionna Smyth, Head of Global Advocacy and Policy, said: “We have no illusions about the Taliban leadership, but the Afghan people cannot be left to their fate. They didn’t vote for the Taliban, and even though the Taliban controls the country, that shouldn’t stop us from trying to help people earn a living and give them hope for a future. freedom from hunger.

“Christian Aid is already implementing programs to provide livelihoods, water and sanitation, but no NGO can do the government’s job. Conditions are becoming even more desperate with the rising price of food and fuel due to the impact of the war in Ukraine.These needs will grow as summer ends and we approach winter.

“That’s why the UK government, alongside its international allies, must do much more to support the economy to get back on its feet and uphold the rights of women and girls who are being cut out of public life.”

Christian Aid calls on the UK government and the international community to:

– Reverse last year’s aid budget cuts to 0.7% of GDP so there is more funding for everyone.

– Donors must give more to meet the UN’s humanitarian appeal for $4.4 billion and, as winter approaches, urgently increase lifesaving humanitarian aid.

– Allow a wide range of development work by extending the existing humanitarian exemption to international sanctions.

– Restore the Afghan central bank so that money can be printed and distributed for the economy to function properly and reach those who need it most.

– Afghan civil society organizations, especially women-led organizations inside and outside Afghanistan, should be able to access funding and support so that 20 years of civil society development civil are not lost. The participation of women at all levels and in all decision-making processes must be encouraged.

– Human rights and in particular the rights of women, girls and minority groups must be respected by the authorities.

LINK

DEC Emergency Appeal for Afghanistan: www.dec.org.uk/appeal/afghanistan-crisis-appeal

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