Food and Health Problems Aggravate Humanitarian Crises in Afghanistan

In 2021, the number of refugees, IDPs, and cases of food insecurity continues to rise in Afghanistan. Currently, 14 million Afghans are facing an emergency level of food insecurity.

Afghanistan crisis.
The portrait of Afghan children IDPs. (UNHCR/Roger Arnold)

ACTNews, AFGHANISTAN – Afghanistan is a multiethnic country located in south-central Asia. Located along the important trade routes that link south and east Asia to Europe and Middle Eastern countries, has made Afghanistan a strategic location.

However, currently, Afghanistan has to face humanitarian crises caused by the ongoing conflict in the country. According to a report from ACT’s Global Humanity Response, more than 500 thousand Afghans have been internally displaced in 2021 whose mostly are women and children.

Due to prolonged conflict, the poverty rate in Afghanistan is expected to increase to up to 72 percent in 2020. Most of the Afghans don’t have enough income to meet their daily food needs.

Afghanistan also has its agricultural sector to decline due to drought that often hit the country. According to World Food Program (WFP), Afghanistan's wheat production has been reduced by 31 percent compared to 2020. The next famine is also expected to be more intense and arrive earlier. Making Afghanistan the country with the second-highest population in emergency food insecurity in the world.

According to World Food Programme, 14 million Afghans are food insecure. Acute malnutrition also spreads in 27 provinces, 10 of which are facing critical situations. It is reported that two children under five in Afghanistan suffer from severe acute malnutrition.

The condition is exacerbated by very minimal health service facilities. The medical services are only concentrated in Kabul while many remote areas do not have available hospitals or doctors.

Said Mukaffiy from ACT’s Global Humanity Response explains that in last Ramadan 2021, ACT has come to assists IDPs in Afghanistan. ACT team and the volunteers distributed iftar packages in several areas in Faryap Province. A total of 1,636 iftar packages were distributed to the IDPs.

"IDPs are currently in dire need of humanitarian assistance especially in the food sector since hunger is likely to get worse because Afghanistan will soon enter winter. However, it cannot be denied that the current conditions are still uncertain regarding the ability to send aid to Afghanistan. If the conditions have improved there, and many generous alms have entered, it is not impossible that the assistance distribution can be carried out," concluded Said. []