Accidents & Disasters
Kabulis brave coldest night as mercury hits -15CBy Ahmad Shah Erfanyar Feb 7, 2012 - 18:26
KABUL (PAN): Afghanistan Meteorological Authority (AMA) officials on Tuesday said that Monday night was the coldest when temperatures plunged to minus 15 degrees Celsius, the lowest-ever for the last 15 years, in the capital Kabul.
The AMA head Abdul Qadir told Pajhwok Afghan News, the cold weather would continue to persist for another week.
The chilly weather created several problems for Kabul residents, particularly those living in shelter camps on the city’s outskirts.
A large number of families displaced by the conflict and natural disasters had taken refuge in their makeshift arrangements outside Kabul in the Bagrami, Shah Shahid, Chaman-i-Hozori, Parwan-i-Du, Chara-i-Qambar and other areas.
Most of the displaced families belong to southern Helmand, Zabul, Kandahar and Uruzgan provinces, while some had returned from neighbouring Pakistan and Iran.
"We are living in freezing conditions in our tent. We have no fuel to warm the ten," Najila, 8, a refugee living in Parwan-i-Du area, told Pajhwok Afghan News. Three of her sisters fell ill due to their exposure to harsh weather conditions.
According to Juma Khan, 30, a resident in Chara-i-Qambar area, as many as 14 children and an elderly woman had died due to the unbearable cold waves. The recent snowfall had even destroyed some tents in the camp, he said.
Although some businessmen had provided assistances to the residents, the displaced families said the aid was inadequate.
The snow had claimed 71 lives across the country so far, with another 34 people sustaining injuries, reports say.
The snowfalls have also blocked several roads in a number of provinces. The officials at the Ministry of Refugee and Repatriation, however, reject reports that 14 people had died of severe cold in the shelter camps.