A week after the Taliban formed an interim government in Afghanistan, the United States announced an additional $64 million in ‘humanitarian aid’ for the war-torn country. The funds will be transferred by the US State Department and the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to independent organisations including NGOs and agencies of the United Nations.
In a press release on Monday (September 13), USAID stated that the common Afghans have been facing the ‘compounding effects’ of conflict, Coronavirus pandemic, insecurity and natural disasters. “For assistance to be effective, we will need an environment conducive to the principled delivery of aid, including the ability for both female and male aid workers to operate freely. This contribution underscores the United States’ commitment to the Afghan people,” it stated.
USAID informed that it has been supporting over 18 million people in Afghanistan, even prior to the ongoing crisis and ‘recent insecurity.’ It added that the newly sanctioned funds would provide vulnerable Afghans with much-needed relief including hygiene and medical supplies, health care, food and nutrition. “USAID has also activated a Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) – based outside of Afghanistan – to lead the U.S. Government’s humanitarian response. This team, which is based outside of Afghanistan, is working with partners to provide aid and adapt programs in response to the new environment,” it continued.
In its press release, the US Agency for International Development claimed that it is the largest donor in Afghanistan with an estimated humanitarian aid of $330 million in 2021 alone. USAID stated that it will continue to deliver critical assistance to the vulnerable population and alleviate their sufferings.
Taliban forms interim caretaker government in Afghanistan
On September 7, the Taliban announced the names of cabinet members of the interim government, which would rule the ‘Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’ till a permanent government was constituted. It was declared that Mullah Mohammad Hasan Akhund would be the acting Prime Minister and have two deputies, namely, Mullah Abdus Salam and Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar. The acting Prime Minister was chosen by the supreme leader of the Taliban aka Maulvi Haibatullah Akhundzada.
Several members of the cabinet are designated terrorists with a bounty on their heads.