Flood-affected thousands require humanitarian assistance in Afghanistan

Source: Xinhua| 2019-03-12 18:58:11|Editor: Shi Yinglun
Video PlayerClose

KABUL, March 12 (Xinhua) -- More than 10,000 households have been displaced following the latest heavy floods in Afghanistan's southern and western provinces, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported on Tuesday.

Around 4,698 households or more than 33,000 people have been affected, requiring humanitarian aids as a result of the recent floods in the southern province of Kandahar, the office said.

"Across eight provinces and Kandahar city, 1,855 houses have been destroyed and 2,841 houses have been partially damaged by flooding," according to the agency.

The OCHA has noted that although nine remote districts are yet to be assessed due to insecurity, but the Afghan Red Crescent Society (ARCS) was planning to scale up assessments in those areas.

The Afghan government has pledged to provide 126 million afghani (about 1.6 million U.S. dollars) for affected people to repair their shelters, support agriculture and so on, and nine hard-to-reach districts have not been assessed, the office noted.

"Immediate needs have been identified as food, non-food items, including blankets, tents, shelter kits, and water and sanitation assistance," the office continued.

The recent floods have also affected 3,205 households in western Farah province, where 1,601 homes have been destroyed and 1,604 have been partially damaged, OCHA said.

As of last Sunday, 85 percent of the flood-affected areas have been assessed and the process is due to be completed in provincial capital Farah city on Tuesday, while in the areas outside the city, no assessment has been launched due to insecurity.

Badghis province in the country's western zone was not safe from the seasonal heavy rains, resulting in flash floods that damaged infrastructures and agricultural lands in some villages, mainly in Muqur district, where wheat, cumin, pea and pistachio crops have been reportedly destroyed.

In some areas, flood waters have been reported 50 cm high and the poorly constructed homes are feared to collapse, but according to the source, "there was sufficient stock available to respond to the needs of the affected areas."

Meantime, the office of Afghan State Minister for Disaster Management and Humanitarian Affairs has announced that it would distribute needed items, including food and cash aids among up to 1,000 people whose homes have completely destroyed and other natural disaster-hit families in the affected provinces of the country.

While heavy snow hit most parts of the country, the latest floods have claimed the lives of more than 60 people and injured over 180 others in the affected Afghan regions.