Afghanistan: WHO’s first air cargo under the Taliban

(Geneva) On Monday, for the first time since the Taliban came to power, an aircraft with medical assistance from the World Health Organization (WHO) landed in Afghanistan.

Posted on Aug 30, 2021 at 10:24 am

In a statement, the WHO said that the plane was provided by the Pakistani government. From Dubai he flew directly to Mazar-i-Sharif Airport in Afghanistan with 12.5 tons of medicines and medical equipment.

Last week the WHO warned that the supply of medical equipment remaining in Afghanistan would only be sufficient for a few days because it could not get any help from Kabul Airport, which has been plagued by chaotic evacuations.

“After days of uninterrupted work on a solution, I am pleased to say that we have now succeeded in partially replenishing the stocks of health facilities in Afghanistan and in ensuring that the health services supported by the WHO can continue for the time being.” Said Dr . Ahmed al-Mandhari, Head of the WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region.

This is the first shipment of medical supplies to land in Afghanistan since the country came under Taliban control, the WHO says. Two more flights are planned.

The 12.5 tons of supplies, including emergency kits, are enough to meet the health needs of more than 200,000 people and perform 3,500 surgeries. The devices are to be delivered directly to 40 health facilities in 29 Afghan provinces.

“In the last few weeks, humanitarian organizations like WHO have had enormous difficulties in sending vital relief supplies to Afghanistan due to security and logistics constraints. The support of the Pakistani people comes at the right time and will save lives, ”added Mandhari.

WHO is working with partners to ensure that this week’s show is “first in a long line”.

“A reliable humanitarian airlift is urgently needed to increase collective humanitarian efforts. For the past two weeks, the world’s attention has focused on the evacuation of Kabul Airport from the air. But the demanding humanitarian work to meet the needs of the tens of millions of vulnerable Afghans who remain in the country begins now, ”said the Geneva-based organization.

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