SHAFAQNA- More Afghans are likely to flee their homes due to escalating violence. The exodus within the nation and outside has forced the landlocked nation on the brink of a humanitarian crisis while efforts to initiate talks are on. “Afghanistan is on the brink of another humanitarian crisis. This can be avoided. This should be avoided,” Babar Baloch, spokesman of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), told a Geneva news briefing.
“A failure to reach a peace agreement in Afghanistan and stem the current violence will lead to further displacement within the country, as well as to neighbouring countries and beyond.” The UNHCR said an estimated 270,000 Afghans had been newly displaced inside the country since January, bringing the total population forced from their homes to more than 3.5 million, Reuters reported.
Intense fighting between Afghan forces and the Taliban continues amid the withdrawal of foreign troops from the country. US President Joe Biden has said that the US military mission in Afghanistan will conclude on Aug. 31. More than 12,000 Afghan families have fled their homes in Kunduz province as Taliban insurgents and government forces battled for control of the southern fringes of the capital city.
Displaced families living in tents in Kunduz city said they are in dire need of food and other relief, Ddnews told. According to UNHCR, Iran and Pakistan host nearly 90% of displaced Afghans – more than two million.
Civilian casualties have risen 29% during the first quarter of this year compared to 2020. The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan said an increasing proportion of women and children were among those targeted. “It’s very challenging for Afghans in general, but for Afghan women – look at the gains of last 20 years,” the UNHCR spokesman said ,Aa told.
Baloch recalled that when he went to Kabul in 2002 for the first time, he saw “images of children – boys and girls going to school.” “That generation has almost graduated now. And for women who finally found the space to breathe in Afghanistan – they’re anxious, they’re worried, and probably they are angry as well. They want peace and stability,” he said.
For now, as the anxious Afghans watch the war unfold in this landlocked nation, humanitarian efforts and aid pips every other concern as the number of displaced keeps growing.