UNHCR calls on the international community to keep engaging with Taliban

Filippo Grandi, United Nations High Commissioner For Refugees (UNHCR), has stated that the international community must continue to engage with the Afghan Taliban.

The UN official addressed a press conference Friday, during his visit Pakistan. He stated that the UNHCR was engaging with the interim Taliban government in Afghanistan on humanitarian issues, and urged the rest of the world to do so.

“Taliban expressed his wish that humanitarian aid be distributed as quickly as possible to the nation, because, in fact, as we saw, the conditions are very difficult.”

He stated that Afghanistan is in dire need of financial assistance, and as time passes by “the situation has become pretty desperate.” You need food, medicines, shelter, as well as other essentials of daily life.

He stated that UNHCR will be able scale up humanitarian aid if it is properly supported and resourced.

“It is crucial that the international community finds (and) the right ways to ensure Afghanistan’s functioning.” A collapse in public services like education or health can lead to a crisis far greater than humanitarian.

When addressing the issue of internally displaced Afghans, he stated that approximately half a million have been forced to flee their homes by violence in their regions. There is not an influx of refugees from neighboring countries, including Pakistan.

He expressed gratitude to Pakistan for its assistance in Afghanistan’s humanitarian operations, and said that he was able to receive some aid trucks from Pakistan during his trip.

“This is very important. Whether it’s Pakistani donations or international donations, we will need Pakistan to fly people in and around. As usual, Pakistan will play an important role in supporting humanitarian operations inside Afghanistan. That is a great thing.