Rescue aid continues to flow to earthquake-hit eastern Afghanistan |

One of the UN teams on the ground, Refugee Agency UNHCRtransported tons of emergency supplies in Khost and Paktika provinces, where several thousand homes were destroyed or damaged by a magnitude 5.9 earthquake that hit early Wednesday morning.

The latest count for Thursday evening showed that at least 1,036 people were killed and more than 1,643 were injured in the country’s worst earthquake in two decades.

“At least 121 of those dead were children, and 67 of those injured were also children,” said Mohamed Ayoya, spokesman for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in Afghanistan. “The total number of dead and injured has not yet been specified. Verification is ongoing and we expect these numbers to be [to be] rising in the coming hours and days.”

Shelter for survivors

Critical supplies arriving from the capital Kabul include hundreds of tents, thousands of blankets, jerry cans, buckets, plastic sheets, kitchen sets and solar lamps – enough to help 4,200 survivors in the Giyan, Bermal, Zerok and Nika areas of Paktika. province and district of Spera in the province of Khost.

To ensure distribution to those most in need, UNHCR set up three supply hubs in Giyan, Bermal and Spera counties so that humanitarian aid can be redirected to communities affected by the earthquake. UNHCR has warned that heavy rains have swept across the region in recent days, exacerbating the plight.

UNICEF also sent life-saving supplies, including 500 first aid kits, as well as supplies to treat acute watery diarrhea to help prevent the spread of waterborne diseases.

Much more “urgent need”

“Much more support is urgently needed to avert a humanitarian catastrophe in the affected areas,” said UNHCR spokesman Shabia Mantou, noting that millions of people in the country are facing starvation and starvation after four decades of conflict and instability.

“Already some 24 million Afghans are in need of humanitarian assistance due to famine and the economic crisis, the lack of development aid and the consequences of a change of government 10 months ago,” Ms Mantoux told reporters in Geneva.

Across Afghanistan, some 3.5 million people have been displaced by conflict and violence, and another 1.57 million people have been displaced from their homes by climate shocks.

© UNICEF/Syed Bidel

A one-year-old girl rests in an emergency hospital after being pulled from the rubble of her collapsed home, which was destroyed by an earthquake in Paktika province, Afghanistan.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button