Middle East/North Africa

14M face severe hunger in Afghanistan amid conflict: World Food Program

Taliban fighters are seen in a vehicle along the roadside in Herat, Afghanistan's third biggest city, after government forces pulled out the day before
Getty Images

The head of the United Nations  food agency said that 14 million Afghans could face severe hunger following the Taliban takeover of the country, The Associated Press reported.

The World Food Program’s (WFP) country director Mary Ellen McGroarty in a video briefing on Wednesday told UN correspondents that Afghanistan is suffering its second severe drought within three years, adding that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has made the current situation catastrophic. 

McGroarty also said that 40 percent of the country’s livestock have been ruined due to the drought, saying that thousands of Afghan citizens would be displaced with the winter season soon approaching, according to the AP. 

“Really the race is on to get food where it’s most needed,” McGroarty said. 

The new warning comes amid the Taliban taking over the country for the first time since 2001, when U.S. troops arrived there in response to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

McGroarty added that the WFP has plans to aid up to 9 million people “over the next couple of months,” also urging donors to send $200 million to provide food into the country, the AP noted.

Tags Afghanistan Afghanistan Kabul Taliban World Food Program World Food Programme

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