Millions of Afghans face hunger: Oxfam
KABUL (PAN): A UK-based organisation has called for international donors to step up food and water deliveries to vulnerable Afghans in several provinces of the country before the onset of harsh winter.
Oxfam said about three million people were going hungry because of a drought that had gripped northern and western parts of the impoverished country since last 2010.
The British aid agency said in a statement on Tuesday: "Governments need to wake up to the gravity of this crisis and ensure they are ready to respond before the situation gets worse."
Asuntha Charles, the Oxfam director in Afghanistan, warned three quarters of people living in the affected areas would run out of food in less than two months.
"The drought has completely destroyed the wheat crop in some areas. People are reducing the amount of food they are eating and selling what little they have," Charles said.
Pastures in the regions have been destroyed due to the drought, and overall 80 percent of non-irrigated wheat crops in those places have been lost. Delays would make things harder for families already struggling to cope, the group said.
"There have been reports of people trekking nine hours to get clean water and going into debt to ensure their children have food. Donor and aid agencies need to heed these warning signs and ensure that people have the support that they need," Charles concluded.
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