23m people now experiencing ‘acute hunger’ in Afghanistan-UN


By Aluta News

Mar. 15, 2022

The number of people experiencing acute hunger in Afghanistan has reached 23 million, the United Nations said on Tuesday.

In a statement, the UN deputy special envoy for humanitarian affairs, Dr Ramiz Alakbarov said that Afghans were now facing food insecurity and a malnutrition crisis of unparalleled proportions.

In July, a month before the Taliban returned to power in the country, the number of people experiencing “acute hunger’’ had stood at 14 million.

The rapid increase had forced families to resort to desperate measures such as skipping meals or taking on unprecedented levels of debt to keep food on the table, according to a UN official.

“In Afghanistan, a staggering 95 per cent of the population is not eating enough food, with that percentage rising to almost 100 pre cent for female-headed households,’’ Alakbarov stated, adding it was a harsh reality.

Many people had long lived in poverty in Afghanistan, but with the collapse of the internationally-backed government and the Taliban return to power in 2021, tens of thousands of people  lost their main sources of income.

International development funds had been cut off and the Afghan central bank’s reserves of more than $9 billion had  been frozen, causing a financial disaster in the country.

In spite of the injection of millions of dollars of UN aid packages, the country’s economy remained in free fall.