Peace is slowly returning whereas an financial disaster is shortly rising in Afghanistan, a landlocked South Asian nation that was mired in battle for many years.
Following the withdrawal of US forces and the Taliban’s takeover of the capital Kabul in August this yr, the group introduced an finish to its 20-year struggle towards international troops.
However the sudden collapse of former President Ashraf Ghani’s administration after Taliban fighters entered the capital has left the brand new Taliban authorities with many challenges, together with a cashless central financial institution.
Afghanistan is presently dealing with an enormous financial disaster because the Taliban authorities doesn’t have sufficient monetary sources to easily run the war-torn nation.
Merchants and small businessmen on the streets of Kabul are frightened over the continuing financial disaster and accuse Washington of pushing their nation towards financial collapse.
“I’ve been operating my carpet enterprise for the previous 15 years in Kabul however have by no means confronted such a scenario the place I couldn’t promote a single carpet in a day,” Abdul Qayoom, a shopkeeper in Kabul, informed Anadolu Company.
Qayoom mentioned Washington’s transfer in mid-August to freeze his nation’s funds triggered the disaster.
The US authorities has blocked over $9 billion of the Afghan central financial institution’s reserves, and plenty of donors and organizations, together with the World Financial institution and the Worldwide Financial Fund, have halted funds for the reason that Taliban swept to energy on Aug. 15.
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A number of nations together with China, Russia, Pakistan and Qatar have referred to as on the US to permit Afghanistan to entry its international reserves, however there have been no constructive indications to date.
Households endure, face meals scarcity
The present disaster has not solely made it troublesome for the Taliban authorities to easily run the nation however has additionally put the lives of thousands and thousands of poor Afghans in danger.
Tooryale Wasil, a taxi driver and the only earner for his eight-member household, mentioned the disaster has made life very exhausting.
“My home ran out of wooden and gasoline as we speak and now I ponder how I’ll purchase them as a result of I can barely save 200 Afghanis (round $2) a day,” he mentioned.
“We had been joyful that the struggle had ended and that we might take pleasure in a peaceable life in Kabul, however this disaster has snatched that pleasure from us,” he added.
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Many Afghan taxi drivers and shopkeepers in Kabul who spoke with Anadolu Company narrated the identical tales of hardship.
However they’re joyful that peace has returned to town after 20 years and they’re now capable of work till late at evening.
“Earlier, the safety scenario and avenue crimes had made our lives very troublesome. However now the Taliban have eradicated crime and there may be now no worry of being robbed or any avenue crimes,” mentioned one other driver.
UN warns of rising disaster
Final week, the UN refugee company (UNHCR) warned that winter has arrived whereas individuals in Afghanistan are dealing with a meals and shelter disaster.
“Almost 23 million individuals, or 55% of the inhabitants, are dealing with excessive ranges of starvation – almost 9 million of whom are liable to famine,” mentioned UNHCR spokesman Babar Baloch in an announcement issued final week whereas launching a world fundraising winter marketing campaign for displaced households in Afghanistan.
“Individuals haven’t got sufficient to eat, and it’s totally seen,” Baloch mentioned whereas calling it “a disaster of starvation and hunger.”
Final month, Afghan Performing Overseas Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi in an open letter to the US Congress referred to as for taking “accountable steps in direction of addressing the humanitarian and financial disaster unfolding” within the nation.
“Because the chilly winter months are quick approaching in Afghanistan, and in a state the place our nation has been hammered by the coronavirus, drought, struggle and poverty, American sanctions haven’t solely performed havoc with commerce and enterprise but additionally with humanitarian help,” the letter mentioned.
He added that US sanctions hurt the nation’s well being, training and different civil providers and are inflicting an enormous drawback for the general public.
“Harm to those constructing blocks will solely hurt widespread Afghans, and this can function the worst reminiscence ingrained in Afghans by the hands of America,” he warned.
Amid these challenges, the Taliban say they’re struggling to offer meals and different important objects to needy individuals throughout the nation.
However there may be hope that issues will change.
“Now we now have a longtime authorities, producing our income by way of taxes, customs etcetera, and we’re spending that quantity on our individuals,” mentioned Zabihullah Mujahid, spokesman for the Taliban authorities.
Mujahid additionally thanked all these nations which are serving to Afghanistan and hoped these crises will finish quickly.