Caritas Internationalis is calling on Confederation members to support Cordaid in response to the developing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. On 22 June a 5.9-magnitude earthquake struck the Patika province killing at least 1,000 people and injuring an estimated 2,000 others. Khost and other nearby provinces have also been affected.
To date, both Caritas Austria and Caritas Germany have pledged monetary support to Cordaid. These funds will provide initial aid to 500 impacted households in Patika where each household will receive an aid package which includes 1 tent, 5 emergency blankets, and possibly medications, over the next few days. It is reported that 1,800 homes have already been destroyed and damaged in the Gyan district of Patika alone.
Cordaid took part in the coordination of the crisis at a national level meeting held by the Ministry of Economy earlier this week, where it was resolved that the humanitarian response needs to be at the national and provincial level so as to better support of disaster victims.
For thousands of Afghan families, this earthquake has only compounded the negative impacts following decades of ongoing conflict and political instability within their country. Caritas in neighbouring countries, such as Caritas Pakistan, have also been alerted and are preparing to support Afghans who may cross the border as a result of this latest natural disaster. Over 300,000 Afghan refugees are currently residing in Pakistan since the fall of the Kabul Government in late 2021.
Caritas Internationalis is therefore calling on members of the Confederation, governments and the public to not lose sight of the “forgotten crises” of our world, including Afghanistan. The death toll and figures of those who have been injured following this latest earthquake is expected to rise.