UK provides $36.5 million in aid to Afghanistan

Women waiting in a queue for aid in Jawzjan, Afghanistan. File photo.

The United Nations World Food Program announced Monday that the UK and Northern Ireland have donated £28.7 million ($36.5 million) to Afghanistan through the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.

The funding will support the WFP’s emergency response for food-insecure families in Afghanistan and provide nutrition for malnourished children and pregnant or breastfeeding women.

UK Minister of State for the Middle East, South Asia and the UN, Tariq Ahmad, said the aid would help more than two million people across Afghanistan during the winter. “This assistance is aimed at some of the most vulnerable, including widows, families led by women or children, and people with disabilities,” he said.

The donation will purchase 13,000 metric tons of wheat flour, vegetable oil, pulses, and salt, aiding over 1 million people for a month. Additionally, up to 1 million individuals will receive cash-based transfers to meet their food needs this winter.

WFP has already used the funds to stockpile 7,000 metric tons of food in remote areas before winter conditions prevent access.

“The harsh Afghan winter is critical for families,” said Mutinta Chimuka, Afghanistan’s Deputy Country Director for WFP. “This UK support is crucial for helping vulnerable families through the most challenging season.”

In 2023, WFP reached over 18 million people in Afghanistan, largely due to substantial donations. The UK is one of WFP’s top five donors in Afghanistan, contributing £183.7 million ($209 million) in the past two years.