Antonio Guterres said that after the Taliban took over, almost half of the Afghan population needed emergency assistance to survive.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned that Afghanistan is about to have a “humanitarian disaster” because he urged countries to provide emergency funding after the final withdrawal of US troops and the end of the war in Afghanistan. Fully take over the Taliban.

Guterres expressed his “serious concern about the deepening humanitarian and economic crisis in the country” on Tuesday, adding that basic services could collapse “totally”.

“Now, more than ever, Afghan children, women and men need the support and unity of the international community,” he said in a statement, while he begged countries to provide financial support.

“I urge all member states to dig deep for the Afghan people at the darkest moment when they need help most. I urge them to provide timely, flexible and comprehensive funding,” the UN Secretary-General said.

United Nations spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said that only 39% of the US$1.3 billion humanitarian appeal currently provided by the United Nations to Afghanistan has been funded.

Guterres announced that the United Nations will announce the details of Afghanistan’s emergency appeal next week.

He said the information will detail the “most urgent humanitarian needs and funding needs” that will be needed in the next four months.

Guterres added that Martin Griffith, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, will coordinate “the entire United Nations system” to prepare for the call.

He said that nearly half of Afghanistan’s population-18 million people-need emergency humanitarian assistance to survive.

“One-third of Afghans don’t know where their next meal will come from. It is expected that more than half of all children under five will be severely malnourished next year.”

“People are losing access to basic goods and services every day. A humanitarian disaster is imminent,” Guterres said.

He added that the severe drought and the upcoming severe cold conditions meant that additional food, shelter and medical supplies “must be rushed” to Afghanistan.

He said: “I call on all parties to promote safe and unimpeded humanitarian assistance to obtain life-saving and life-sustaining supplies, as well as all humanitarian workers-men and women.”

Guterres stated that the commitment of humanitarian agencies to stay in Afghanistan and provide assistance “will not be shaken.”

The international agency had already evacuated hundreds of humanitarian personnel from Afghanistan before the United States completed its withdrawal from Afghanistan on Tuesday. The staff have been temporarily relocated to Almaty, Kazakhstan’s largest city, to perform tasks remotely.

Guterres emphasized the importance of ensuring that Kabul International Airport remains open after the United States withdraws to facilitate large-scale aid delivery.

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