Heartbreaking photographs, videos and anecdotes have been flowing in from Afghanistan since the Taliban gained control. Afghanistan is now on the verge of ‘universal poverty,’ according to the United Nations. Deborah Lyons, the UN special envoy, has urged world leaders to band together to prevent Afghanistan from slipping into abject poverty.
Lyons has warned that Afghanistan’s economy and culture are on the verge of collapse and that this might lead to the spread of the Islamic State to neighbouring nations. ‘For a few more months, the economy must be allowed to breathe, providing the Taliban the opportunity to demonstrate flexibility and a genuine desire to do things differently this time, particularly from a human rights perspective’, he said.
In keeping with predictions, the humanitarian crisis is escalating in the country, putting women and minority groups at risk, as well as other people in the country. However, there is another ‘looming crisis’ resulting from the suspension of funds that used to come in from international organizations and other countries. Millions of Afghans are threatened with poverty and hunger if billions of dollars in Afghan assets are frozen.
Continuing crises could push the country into years of devastation and result in the exodus of refugees. International groups and world leaders are being urged by the UN envoy to provide humanitarian relief ‘on a large scale’ to prevent a ‘total breakdown of the economy and social order’.