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Afghan IDPs dread coming Harsh Winter.

December 4, 2012

Amnesty International says the US-led war in Afghanistan has displaced half a million people across the country, many of whom are living in camps where they do not have access to housing and food.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) says more than 30,000 of these internally displaced persons (IDP) have settled in camps around Kabul where the coming cold weather will mean death for some.

“We are in dire need of help, the weather is getting cold but we don’t have blankets, fuel, and warm clothes. I don’t know how to keep my children warm,” said Shahzada Khan, who arrived at a camp in Kabul after fleeing violence in Laghman province in eastern Afghanistan.

Last year’s exceptionally brutal winter brought Afghanistan’s displacement crisis into sharp focus, when more than 100 children died of the cold weather or starvation in the numerous camps scattered in and around the capital, according to the French aid group Solidarites International.

The UNHCR has begun distributing winter aid to people who are at risk in the cold weather in remote areas of Afghanistan, as well as Kabul but the assistance will go to only 40,000 families because of the lack of budget.

Last month, a study by the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) found that the number of Afghans forced to flee their homes in Afghanistan is increasing.

Most of the IDPs “are living in appalling conditions and in situations of extreme poverty,” said Dan Tyler, protection and advocacy manager at NRC Afghanistan. 

The US-led war in Afghanistan removed the Taliban from power, but insecurity continues to rise across Afghanistan, despite the presence of about 130,000 US-led troops.


From → Afghanistan

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