The EU office in Afghanistan announced in a statement that it has disbursed €61 million in humanitarian aid to address the pressing needs of vulnerable individuals in the country and Afghan refugees in neighboring Pakistan.
Out of the total funding, €60 million is designated for humanitarian organizations operating within Afghanistan, while an additional €1 million is allocated for those in Pakistan.
The fresh funding will be pivotal in addressing the severe food crisis in Afghanistan, where nearly half of the population faces acute food insecurity, stated the EU office in Afghanistan.
The funds will also be deployed to meet other critical needs, including shelter, protection, healthcare, nutrition, and water and sanitation. Notably, these funds will assist the population affected by a series of earthquakes that struck the western region of the country in October.
A portion of the funding will extend support to Afghan refugees returning to their homeland, with a focus on protection monitoring and immediate assistance in host communities, the organization affirmed.
This latest aid supplements the nearly €94 million in humanitarian support already earmarked for Afghanistan this year, including a €4.5 million package approved in response to the recent earthquakes. The EU channels its humanitarian aid in Afghanistan exclusively through on-ground humanitarian partners.
“The humanitarian needs of the Afghan people remain deeply concerning, especially in the aftermath of the devastating earthquakes,” said Janez Lenarcic, Commissioner for Crisis Management, said.
“The EU took swift action after the disaster with an initial emergency aid package, and we are now bolstering the funding significantly to aid not only the populations still grappling with the aftermath of the earthquakes but also those facing hardships across the country and those in Pakistan or returning,” Lenarcic added.
According to an EU statement, Afghanistan stands as one of the largest humanitarian crises globally, with over 29 million people requiring humanitarian assistance in the current year. More than 90% of the population resides below the poverty line, and around 17 million people grapple with acute food insecurity. Despite access challenges, the EU continues to ensure the delivery of life-saving assistance, with over €1.7 billion in humanitarian funding provided since 1994.