UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres Urges Wise Action For Afghanistan

- 28 January 2022 09:08 WIB
Afghan children playing with kite (Unsplash/Sohaib Ghyasi)
Afghan children playing with kite (Unsplash/Sohaib Ghyasi)

JAKARTADAILY.ID - UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres reminded the Security Council that Afghanistan is in a very dangerous situation and it should authorize all transactions for humanitarian operations in the Taliban-ruled country.

"We need to give financial institutions and commercial partners legal assurance that they can work with humanitarian operators without fear of breaching sanctions," said Guterres, Reuters reported Tuesday (January 25, 2022).

Guterres also called for the suspension of any rules or conditions restricting any operation to save lives. There are millions of people in the country who are starving, while the UN cannot do much due to the lack of liquidity. Education and social conditions are also worsening, so Afghan people are in dire need of aid from other nations.

Since the Taliban took power in August, $9.5 billion in Afghan central bank funds have been frozen abroad, and there was no international development assistance anymore. Although in December, $280 million has been released after there was an agreement from donors to a frozen World Bank-administered Afghan Reconstruction Trust Fund. The World Food Program and UNICEF have used this money to improve nutrition and health in Afghanistan.

However, more fund is needed to save people, the remaining $1.2 billion in the fund, according to Guterres, "must be released to save Afghanistan's people in the winter."

Discussion between the UN, ICRC, World Bank, and key donor countries have been conducted intensively aiming at the solution to help the Afghan people. A further $3.6 billion is allocated for health and education, basic infrastructure, livelihoods enhancement, and social stability, with a focus on women's and girls' needs.

Editor: Mukhtar Wijaya

Source: Reuters

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